Aussie shares set to finish November up 3.7 per cent

Derek Rose |

The Australian share market edged lower on Thursday but it’s set to snap a three-month losing streak despite recent yo-yo trading.

At noon AEDT, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 6.2 points, or 0.09 per cent, to 7,028.7, while the All Ordinaries had dropped 8.2 points, or 0.11 per cent, to 7,237.6.

With a few hours of trading left in November, the ASX200 was up 3.7 per cent for the month.

November will be its first winning month since July and its best month since a 6.2 per cent rise over January. But the index is still slightly in the red for the year after its three-month losing spell.

Eight of the ASX’s 11 sectors were in the red at midday, with three – industrials, consumer staples and financials – modestly higher.

Property was the biggest loser, falling 1.8 per cent as warehouse owner Goodman Group dropped 4.4 per cent.

The Big Four banks were all modestly higher, with Westpac and CBA adding 0.2 per cent, NAB gaining 0.4 per cent and ANZ gaining 0.3 per cent.

Iress was the biggest gainer in the ASX200, soaring 14.9 per cent to a three-month high of $7.03 after the financial services software company raised its full-year guidance by around $11 million, saying it now expected to make around $140 million in 2023/24.

“Iress’ transformation plan has been accelerated and is delivering outcomes,” group CEO and managing director Marcus Price said.

Origin Energy was down 2.1 per cent to $8.225 after the utility’s board recommended against an alternative takeover offer by a Brookfield-led consortium. Shareholders will vote on the original $16 billion proposal on Monday, with a close vote expected.

In the heavyweight mining sector, BHP was down 0.2 per cent and Rio Tinto dipped 0.3 per cent while Fortescue added 0.8 per cent.

Lithium miner Pilbara dropped 1.4 per cent while Allkem fell 1.8 per cent.

Sandfire Resources was down 2.7 per cent as the copper miner announced a review of geospatial data revealed “unregistered, low density artefact scatter” – the remains of past Indigenous inhabitation, generally stone or bones – had been disturbed at its shuttered DeGrussa mine in WA in 2017 and 2018.

Sandfire CEO Brendan Harris said Sandfire had engaged with the traditional owners to inform them and apologise. 

Retail Food Group was up 7.1 per cent to 6c after the Gloria Jean’s, Donut King and Crust Pizza franchise manager said it would buy Beefy’s Pies, a Queensland-based family-owned business, for $10 million.