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ASX up 0.26% at noon as US bond yields hit a high not seen since 2009

Yields on 30-year Treasuries are experiencing their most significant quarterly increase since 2009, causing concerns that the recent bond market turmoil could have broader implications for financial markets. The long-bond yield has surged approximately 84 basis points since the end of June, reaching about 4.81 percent, its highest level since 2010. At one point during Thursday’s New York trading session, the quarterly rise in yields was the most pronounced since the three months leading up to the 1987 stock market crash.

Several factors have contributed to the decline in Treasuries. These include the Federal Reserve’s indication that it intends to maintain higher interest rates for an extended period, increased government borrowing to cover budget deficits, Fitch Ratings downgrading the US’s top credit rating, and rising oil prices. The turmoil has particularly affected investors in longer-maturity bonds, as they face the greatest interest-rate risk.

At noon, the S&P/ASX 200 is 0.26 per cent higher at 7,043.40.

The SPI futures are pointing to a rise of 18 points.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector is Materials, up 1.43 per cent. The worst-performing sector is Health Care, down 0.49 per cent.

The best-performing large cap is South32 (ASX:S32), trading 3.52 per cent higher at $3.39. It is followed by shares in IGO (ASX:IGO) and Allkem (ASX:AKE).

The worst-performing large cap is Atlas Arteria (ASX:ALX), trading 2.23 per cent lower at $5.485. It is followed by shares in ResMed (ASX:RMD) and Insurance Australia Group (ASX:IAG).

Asian news

Asia-Pacific markets largely climbed in the final trading day of the week, mirroring moves on Wall Street.

This comes as traders assess to key economic data out of Japan, including the September inflation rate for Tokyo. The capital’s data is seen as a leading indicator of nationwide trends.

Tokyo’s consumer price index rose 2.8% in September from a year ago, softening from the 2.9% gain in August. The core inflation rate, which strips out prices of fresh food, came in at 2.5%, lower than the 2.6% expected by a Reuters poll.

Japan also saw unemployment, industrial output and retail sales data for August.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 gained 0.1% in early trade, while the Topix continued to extend losses and slid 0.2%.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index popped 1.61%, leading gains in Asia.

South Korean and mainland Chinese markets are closed for a holiday.

Company news

Liontown Resources Limited (ASX:LTR) announces an update on the estimates of the Kathleen Valley Lithium Project. The project remains on schedule to commence first production of spodumene by mid-2024, the project capital costs to first production are estimated to be A$951 million and the production has been accelerated to 4Mtpa. Shares are trading 1.17 per cent lower at $2.95.

Blackstone Minerals (ASX:BSX) has entered into an MOU with Arca to investigate the carbon capture potential at Ta Khoa Project in Vietnam. The MOU will also explore opportunities to utilise Arca’s carbon capture technologies within the Project. Shares are trading 4.17 per cent higher at 13 cents.

Harvest Technology Group (ASX:HTG) has received a $960,045 advance from Radium Capital, providing early-access to funds expected to be received in relation to the Company’s Research and Development tax incentive rebate. The non-dilutive funding facility Harvest to diversify their customer base and move towards the release of their technology products in the coming months. Shares are trading 11.54 per cent higher at 3 cents.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1782.70 an ounce.

Iron ore is 1.2 per cent higher at US$119.70 a tonne.

Iron ore futures are pointing to a 0.88 per cent rise.

One Australian dollar is buying 64.43 US cents.

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