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Three-week high: ASX closes 1.06% higher

Oil prices in Asia remained stable following a significant increase on Thursday, despite concerns over higher interest rates in the US and Europe.

The jump in prices was driven by a weaker dollar and expectations of more stimulus measures in China. West Texas Intermediate maintained a level above $70 per barrel after a 3.4 per cent surge in the previous session, indicating a potential modest weekly gain.

China implemented looser monetary policy to revive its economy and is anticipated to announce further targeted stimulus measures. Additionally, Beijing issued a substantial crude import quota during the week.

At the closing bell, the S&P/ASX 200 was 1.06 per cent higher at 7,251.20.


The Dow Jones futures are pointing to a fall of 24 points.
The S&P 500 futures are pointing to a fall of 4.5 points.
The Nasdaq futures are pointing to a fall of 15.75 points.
The SPI futures are up 79 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector was Energy, up 3.52 per cent. The worst-performing sector was Health Care, down 0.09 per cent.

The best-performing large cap was AGL Energy (ASX:AGL), closing 9.73 per cent higher at $10.60. It was followed by shares in Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) and Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR).

The worst-performing large cap was Infratil (ASX:IFT), closing 1.24 per cent lower at $8.79. It was followed by shares in Amcor plc (ASX:AMC) and CSL (ASX:CSL).

Asian markets

Japan’s Nikkei has gained 0.74 per cent.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has gained 1.37 per cent.
China’s Shanghai Composite has gained 1.15 per cent.

Company news

Iceni Gold (ASX:ICL) announced that assays and fieldwork have confirmed high-grade vein at Everleigh in WA. Technical Director David Nixon commented: “Fieldwork continues to focus along the length of the soil anomaly in the search for further outcropping veining along strike.” Shares closed 6.1 per cent higher at 10 cents.

Austco Healthcare (ASX:AHC) awarded a $7.4m contract for its communications system, Tacera. CEO Clayton Astles, commented “this is the largest contract win in the company’s history and demonstrates our growing sales momentum and the increasing reputation of our flagship product.” Shares closed 25 per cent higher at 18 cents.

Errawarra Resources (ASX:ERW) announced that lithium exploration continues at their Andover West in WA. Tom Reddicliffe, Executive Chairman commented: “We are very much excited by what the Pilbara region keeps delivering to the market and we look forward to continuing with our exploration activity.” Shares closed 5.9 per cent higher at 18 cents.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,971.60 an ounce.
Iron ore is 1 per cent higher at US$115.40 a tonne.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a 0.36 per cent rise.
Light crude is trading $0.08 higher at US$70.70 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 68.94 US cents.