• ASX gained today as China announced more stimulus
  • Liontown up after board granted Albemarle exclusive due diligence 
  • Leo Lithium down 50pc after Mali ordered stop to DSO activities

 

The ASX and other regional stock markets rallied after China announced more stimulus measures aimed at boosting demand for homes.

The ASX 200 index gained +0.4% today as China took bigger steps to stimulate its ailing property sector – announcing a nationwide minimum down payment at 20% for first-time homebuyers.  China is also loosening barriers for property ownership in some of the country’s most prized locations.

China-sensitive commodities including iron ore and lithium players rose after the announcement, along with the Aussie dollar, which is now trading higher at US64.65c from US65.4c earlier this morning.

Miners Allkem (ASX:AKE) and BHP (ASX:BHP) gained ground, while Energy stocks also leapt higher.

Qantas (ASX:QAN) dropped by -3% to an 11-month low as the airline responded to the allegations made by the ACCC that it sold thousand of tickets on cancelled flights.

Some commentary has suggested that Qantas was engaged in charging a ‘fee for no service’ due to cancelled flights over this period.

Per a Qantas announcement today: “Our longstanding practice is that when a flight is cancelled, customers are offered an alternative flight as close as possible to their original departure time, or a refund.”

Meanwhile, there were more bad news for the Discretionary sector as ABS data today showed household spending eased by 0.7% in July from a year earlier, the first fall since early 2021.

The ABS also reported that company profits in Australia fell 13% between April to June, while salaries increased by just 1.8% during this 3-month period.

 

BIG CAP WINNERS

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Albemarle is back with a bid valued at $6.6 billion for Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR), a $3 per share offer the Kathleen Valley mine owner’s Tim Goyder led board looks ready to accept.

In an announcement to the ASX this morning, the Liontown board declared it had decided to grant limited exclusive due diligence to the US lithium giant, whose boss Kent Masters last week made a flying visit to Perth, where Liontown is headquartered.

LTR rose 9% today to $2.85.

Now read: Ground Breakers: Albemarle is back for Liontown with a $6.6bn offer and this time it’s game on

 

BIG CAP LOSERS

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Leo Lithium (ASX:LLL) fell 50%, returning to trading after voluntary suspension on July 20. News is that the direct shipping ore (DSO) component of activities at the Goulamina lithium project in Mali has been halted, before discussions are held with the local government.

SkyCity Entertainment (ASX:SKC), the operator of a number of casinos in New Zealand, fell 14% on news that it is facing a 10-day suspension of its licence to operate a casino in Auckland in the wake of a customer complaint.

According to the release, the customer alleges that SkyCity Auckland “did not comply with requirements in its SkyCity Auckland Host Responsibility Programme relating to detection of incidences of continuous play by the customer”.