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ASX down 0.38% at noon as oil prices rise

Oil prices increased for a second consecutive day, driven by hedge funds’ growing confidence in tightening oil supplies, potentially resuming the rally, with WTI futures briefly surpassing $90 a barrel; this rise was fueled by increased bullish positions, while OPEC stability and signs of physical market tightness contributed to the surge.

At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.38 per cent lower at 7,042.10.

The SPI futures are pointing to a fall of 22 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Information Technology, up 0.69 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Materials, down 1.09 per cent.

The best-performing large cap is Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC), trading 2.81 per cent higher at $6.94. It is followed by shares in New Hope Corporation (ASX:NHC) and Yancoal Australia (ASX:YAL).

The worst-performing large cap is Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS), trading 3.76 per cent lower at $4.095. It is followed by shares in Allkem (ASX:AKE) and Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN).

Asian news

Asia-Pacific markets are mixed as investors look toward inflation data from across the region this week.

Singapore and Australia are expected to report inflation figures for August this week, while Japan will release inflation data for the Tokyo region. The capital region’s inflation data is seen as a leading indicator of nationwide trends.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbed 0.66% and the Topix is up 0.45%, rebounding from losses last week.

South Korea’s Kospi slid 0.28% and the Kosdaq 1.34% lower, extending losses from the week before.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index slipped 0.65%, with mainland Chinese markets also in negative territory. The benchmark CSI 300 was down 0.33%

Company news

Global lithium leader, Allkem (ASX:AKE) has made several announcements today, however we will focus on the one made regarding their James Bay Lithium Project. The updated Feasibility Study confirms a robust, high-value hard rock lithium operation utilising renewable hydropower, in which there was a ~108% increase in pre-tax Net Present Value (“NPV”) to US$2.9 billion. Shares are trading 3.04 per cent lower at $11.65.

ENRG Elements (ASX:EEL, OTC:EELFF) has executed a binding Share Purchase Agreement with Kavango Resources, for the sale of 90% of its Ghanzi West Copper-Silver Project. The proceeds from the sale of 90% of the Ghanzi West Project will enable the Company to advance its projects in Niger. Shares are trading 16.67 per cent higher at 0.7 cents.

Redflow (ASX:RFX) has announced that the U.S. Department of Energy has approved funding for a 34.4 MWh long-duration energy storage microgrid project in which Redflow has been named as the battery provider. In response, Redflow CEO and Managing Director Tim Harris said: “Our batteries are ideally suited for daily use in the Central Valley’s extreme heat, and we’re proud to provide the resources the hospital needs to ensure safe, reliable operations.” Shares are trading 8.18 per cent higher at 29.8 cents.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1942.80 an ounce.

Iron ore is 3.1 per cent higher at US$126.60 a tonne.

Iron ore futures are pointing to a 2 per cent fall.

One Australian dollar is buying 64.27 US cents.

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