Gains at the big end of town led the market today, as the ASX 200 rose by 1.88%. Intra-day, that marked its best return of the year (biggest gain since November 3, 2020).

There were similar gains for all of the major sectors, as Energy stocks rose again while the ASX 200 Financial index and the Materials sector (big miners) both climbed by around 2%.

By sector, gains were led by the ASX 200 Consumer Staples index (which includes the big grocery chains such as Woolworths), which jumped by more than 2.6%.

BIG CAP WINNERS

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$4.9bn explosives company Orica (ASX:ORI) led the large cap pack, jumping by almost 15% on no news.

The move followed a market update yesterday where the company flagged $345m to $370m of impairments, adding that the business had stabilised over the previous six months with “second half ammonium nitrate (AN) volumes higher than the first half”.

Metal detection and mining technology company Codan (ASX:CDA) rose almost 6%, while Treasury Wine Estates (ASX:TWE) was up more than 4% following the release of its 2021 sustainability report.

Large cap mining stock South32 (ASX:S32) was also on today’s winner’s list, after announcing that its exercised its “pre-emptive rights to acquire up to an additional 25% shareholding and related rights in Mozal Aluminium”.

The $US250m deal will bring S32’s interest in the Mozambique-based aluminium play to 72.1%.

BIG CAP LOSERS

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Near term uranium miner Paladin Energy (ASX:PDN) fell by more than 12% in Thursday trade.

Diversified tech company PPK Group (ASX:PPK) slipped by another ~10%. At recent highs above $21, the stock had posted a cumulative 10,000% gain since 2017, but has fallen sharply over the past two weeks to close today at $15.32.