Tech stocks drive Wall Street higher; US jobs increase

US stock markets climbed on Thursday, mainly led by tech stocks after US jobless claims fell for the third straight week.

The Dow Jones rose by 0.04%, S&P 500 by 0.30% — both to record highs — and tech heavy Nasdaq by 0.35%.

Some of the best performing tech stocks included Apple which rose by 2%, and Salesforce with a 2.5% gain.

In other markets, iron ore fell again by 1.5% to $US162.96 a tonne, on concerns over China slowdown as many parts of the country go into strict lockdowns.

To cryptos, where Bitcoin is falling slightly, and trading at US$45,200 level at 8:30am AEST, from US$45,900 on Thursday.

Meanwhile, a Melbourne and London-based crypto exchange, Coinjar, has become an official sponsor of Brentford Football Club, ahead of its debut season in English Premier League.

ASX 200 to open higher

The ASX 200 looks set to open higher his morning, with futures markets (September contracts) pointing up by 0.35% at 8:30am AEST.

Yesterday, the benchmark traded flat before sneaking into positive territory, up 0.05% on the day.

Despite trading flattish, the market was fairly buoyant on Thursday, as a number of stocks posted healthy gains after releasing their full-year results.


5 ASX small caps to watch today

Duratec (ASX:DUR)

The specialist contractor company announced that its joint venture with Ertech has secured a $53m contract to design and construct a wharf. No further detail about the wharf was released.

Baby Bunting (ASX:BBN)
The babies-focused retail company reported that its total sales for the full year of FY21 was $468.4 million, up 15.6% on the prior corresponding period (pcp). This resulted in a statutory NPAT of $17.5 million, which was up by 76% on the previous year.

New Energy Solar (ASX:NEW)
The solar power investment company has appointed Liam Thomas as its new CEO starting from October 1st. Thomas is the current Chief Investment Officer of NEW, and has been with the business since 2016. NEW’s previous CEO, John Martin, resigned to take up a position as CEO of a global renewable energy development company, Windlab.

Irongate Group (ASX:IAP)
The real estate company has acquired an office building to be constructed at 34 Southgate Avenue, Cannon Hill QLD. The total purchase consideration is $36m, which represents an initial yield of 5.0%.

The utilities tech specialist said it has signed an extended agreement with a communications company worth an additional $0.63m of transaction revenue. Approximately 50% of this contract value will be recognised in IKE’s FY22 results, with the rest to be reported in FY23.