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ASX up 0.4%: Tech stocks soar

The S&P/ASX 200 increased by 0.4% on Friday at 11:30am, primarily driven by a notable 2.2% increase in the technology sector, reflecting a broader global market uptrend fueled by growing demand for artificial intelligence products. Wall Street witnessed record highs as both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Index reached new peaks.

Notably, Block, the owner of Afterpay, emerged as the top performer following its December quarter sales surpassing analysts’ projections.

The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 32 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Information Technology, up 1.61 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Utilities, down 0.62 per cent.

The best-performing large cap is Pro Medicus (ASX:PME), trading 4.21 per cent higher at $98.51. It is followed by shares in Xero (ASX:XRO) and NEXTDC (ASX:NXT).

The worst-performing large cap is Newmont Corporation (ASX:NEM), trading 7.05 per cent lower at $47.17. It is followed by shares in IGO (ASX:IGO) and Qantas Airways (ASX:QAN).

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$2035.20 an ounce.

Iron ore is 0.5 per cent higher at US$120.60 a tonne.

Iron ore futures are pointing to a 1.62 per cent rise.

One Australian dollar is buying 65.63 US cents.