ASX rallies to two-month high; Energy stocks, Magellan climb

Energy and mining stocks rallied, boosted by further policy moves in China to stimulate the country’s recovery from the pandemic. Its central bank cut two key benchmark lending rates for the first time in 10 months and there are hopes Beijing will separately announce additional forceful measures.

The energy sector was the best performing, climbing 1.9 per cent. Woodside Energy shares rallied 2.2 per cent to $36.31 after the oil explorer said it would proceed with a $US7.2 billion ($10.6 billion) oil project in Mexico that it inherited from BHP.

The company’s board has approved development of the Trion project, off Mexico’s north-east coast, including $US4.8 billion to be paid by Woodside.

Mining stocks also recorded robust gains, led by a 1.3 per cent gain in BHP’s shares to $46.72.

Shares of Pilbara Minerals rallied 2.5 per cent to $4.94 and IGO added 2.2 per cent to $15.23 after an upbeat note from UBS which has upgraded its lithium prices for both miners.

BHP Group shares rallied 1.3 per cent to $46.72. Fortescue Metals edged up 0.3 per cent to $22.40, Rio Tinto rose 0.7 per cent to $117.40, South32 added 0.8 per cent to $3.94, Amcor rose 0.9 per cent to $15.26, Allkem rose 1.5 per cent to $16.11.


The best-performing stock on the ASX was fund manager Magellan, helped by the buoyant mood in the market. The shares gained 5.8 per cent to $9.06

The big four banks all advanced. Commonwealth Bank shares rose 1.1 per cent to $101.62, National Australia Bank climbed 1.7 per cent to $26.50, Westpac added 1.3 per cent to $21.43 and ANZ edged up 0.8 per cent to $23.80.

Company news

Star Entertainment Group shares dropped 3.2 per cent to $1.07 after it was revealed that Charter Hall no longer plans to proceed with the acquisition and partial leaseback of Treasury Casino and Hotel buildings in Brisbane. .

Toll roads owner Atlas Arteria slumped 3.6 per cent to $6.19, tracking its European peers, Eiffage and Vinci, lower after the French government said it was considering a higher tax for toll road operators that could bring as much as €8 billion.

Retailer Best & Less Group shares edged lower 0.3 per cent to $1.89 after it downgraded its profit guidance as sales dropped. The company expects net profit of between $3.6 million and $4.2 million in the six months ended June 30, down from previous guidance of $10 million to $12 million.


Regis Resources shares 1.3 per cent to $1.945 after the gold miner announced output cuts.

Talga Group, the Perth-based listed battery materials company, said it has secured a €150 million ($239 million) loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) to fund a project in northern Sweden, where it runs a plant producing graphite anode materials for batteries designed for European carmakers.

The funding deal comes after the European Union’s so-called Green Industrial Plan was announced to compete with the US Inflation Reduction Act, a package that includes $US369 billion ($560 billion) of subsidies and tax credits for clean energy technologies.

In Hong Kong, shares of CLP Holdings, the parent of EnergyAustralia, advanced 5.9 per cent to $HK60.70. CLP is in discussions to complete a deal with Macquarie for its up to 50 per cent stake, which is up for sale.