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ASX down 0.26% at noon: Pilbara Mineral upgrades resource

Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) have surged following the announcement of a substantial 36 per cent increase in total Resource tonnage and a 64 per cent increase in total Measured and Indicated Resource, enhancing overall resource confidence with 82 per cent of the Mineral Resource now classified as Measured and Indicated, making it one of the strongest performers on the benchmark ASX 200 for 2023.

At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.26 per cent lower at 7,306.30.

The SPI futures are pointing to a fall of 20 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is REITs, up 0.71 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Health Care, down 1.15 per cent.

The best-performing large cap is Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS), trading 3.01 per cent higher at $5.14. It is followed by shares in Allkem (ASX:AKE) and Lynas Rare Earths (ASX:LYC).

The worst-performing large cap is ResMed (ASX:RMD), trading 4.5 per cent lower at $29.32. It is followed by shares in Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) and Insurance Australia Group (ASX:IAG).

Asian news

Asia-Pacific markets fell as investors look ahead to China’s inflation figures and trade balance later this week.

China will release its trade balance for Tuesday and inflation data on Wednesday, which will give clues to the country’s recovery trajectory.

On Monday, Thailand releases its inflation data for July and Indonesia reports its second quarter growth data.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 slumped 1% on its open, while the Topix fell 0.52%. Japan’s central bank will release its summary of opinions for its July 28 meeting, where it adjusted its stance on its yield curve control policy.

South Korea’s Kospi was down 0.16% and the Kosdaq dropped 0.78%.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index is also set to fall, with futures at 19,470, compared to the HSI’s close of 19,539.46.

Company news

Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) announced a substantial increase in Mineral Resource at its Pilgangoora Operation in WA, reinforcing its position as one of the world’s largest hard-rock lithium operations. In response, Managing Director and CEO, Dale Henderson, said: “We have added 109Mt of additional Mineral Resource at a direct exploration cost of only 13 cents per tonne of additional resource.” Shares are trading 2.91 per cent higher at $5.14.

Lithium Australia (ASX:LIT) has entered an agreement with Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) relating to their disruptive lithium extraction technology. In response, CEO Simon Linge commented, “We are excited by the future opportunity to licence our proven high value technology to all existing and new lithium mines across Australia and the rest of the world.” Shares are trading 48.5 per cent higher at 4.9 cents.

Liontown Resources Limited (ASX:LTR) will provide a strategy and Kathleen Valley Project update at the Diggers and Dealers Mining Forum today. This will include progress towards production, DSO project, and government funding support. Shares are trading 0.91 per cent higher at $2.77.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1946.20 an ounce.

Iron ore is 1.3 per cent higher at US$105.05 a tonne.

Iron ore futures are pointing to a 1.2 per cent fall.

One Australian dollar is buying 65.89 US cents.