• The ASX rose in a broad brushed rally
  • Fortescue’s CFO of 13 years quit
  • Australian and US CPI will be due for release later this week

 

The ASX extended gains in a broad brushed rally on Monday, with 9 out of 11 sectors finishing in the green.

The benchmark ASX200 index closed 0.60% higher as Energy and Mining stocks led, while Health stocks floundered.

Local investors took cue from Wall Street, which registered its best day of 2023 on Friday after the release of US non-farm payrolls report.

US stocks rose after the report showed that average hourly earnings were softer than expected, easing the likelihood of another jumbo Fed hike in February.

Across Asia today, shares were mainly higher after Hong Kong and mainland China resumed quarantine-free travel over the weekend. The HangSeng index lifted 1.5%.

On the ASX, Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG) fell 0.2% after the resignation of its long-time CFO, Ian Wells.

In a statement to the ASX, FMG said that Wells has resigned to pursue other opportunities, and the company is now undertaking a process to identify his successor.

In lithium news, Core Lithium (ASX:CXO) has relocated its head office from Adelaide to Perth, saying that Perth is the corporate centre of Australia’s lithium industry.

IGO (ASX:IGO) climbed 1.75% after its JV firm Tianqi Lithium Energy Australia, a joint venture with China’s Tianqi Lithium, tabled an offer to acquire Essential Metals Ltd (ASX: ESS) at 50c a share.

Essential Metals rose almost 40% on the news.

Meanwhile, the Australian Federal Court has ruled in favour of Tolga Kumova in his case against defendant Alan Davison, better known by his Twitter handle, “Stock Swami”.

Judge Michael Lee ruled that Davison had repeatedly defamed Kumova in a series of tweets, and ordered to him to pay $275k plus interest at 3 per cent for a fixed period.

 

Housing approvals slide

There’s more bad news for the Australian housing industry as building approvals slid further in November.

According to data from the ABS today, the total number of dwellings approved fell 9% in November, following a 5.6% decrease in October.

This is a busy and important week for economics data.

On Wednesday, Australia will report its monthly CPI, with consensus for it to rise to 7.4% (from 6.9%).

“However investors should take comfort in the thought that lower inflation is around the corner,” said Josh Gilbert, market analyst at eToro.

“The million-dollar question, though, is how quickly inflation will fall. Inflation will be the fundamental key to market moves this year and will ultimately dictate when investors begin to take on more risk in markets.”

The US will also release its inflation figures on Thursday (US time).

“Another decline in US inflation to start the year could set the market tone for markets in 2023,” said Gilbert.

“But, last week’s Fed’s minutes did show that it would take substantially more evidence for them to be confident inflation is on the sustained path down.”

 

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Uranium stock Paladin Energy (ASX:PDN) rose 10% on rebound sentiment.

South32 (ASX:S32) rose 4% on no specific news. The company did release a statement saying that it will report its half year results on January 16th.

 

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