Oil prices rose again as the European Union watched proposals for a complete ban on Russian crude oil imports. Benchmark futures for Brent crude rose 0.6 percent to $116.20, while US WTI oil futures rose 0.7 percent to $115.90.
Iron ore prices rose 2.4 percent to $134.45 a ton on a strong commodities day, boosted by news of coronavirus cases easing in China as Beijing took steps to ease restrictions on public movements and gatherings. relax.
on the S†P/ASX 200 the best performer on the day was buy now pay later player Zip Co. It shot up 14 percent to 97.5¢ but is still down 86.2 percent in the past 12 months. ASX-listed chess keepers in Afterpay owner Block rose 10.9 percent to $129.85.
Elsewhere in the knocked-down tech sector, shares in cloud accounting firm Xero rose 5.2 percent, with software logistics firm WiseTech rising 3.8 percent.
Risk from the rally spilled over into cryptocurrency bitcoin, which climbed 4.8 percent to $30,422 at the closing bell. The Australian dollar rose 0.4 percent and bought US71.9¢.
The worst performer on the benchmark index was artificial intelligence and job placement group Appen. It fell 3.7 percent to $6.30 and the stock is now down 23.8 percent in two trading sessions since potential acquisition partner Telus International withdrew a $1.2 billion bid.
The star in the market was Bubs Australia, a manufacturer of goat-based infant formula, after US President Joe Biden took to Twitter to announce that his government had struck a deal to buy 27.5 million bottles of infant formula in the US. .
Bubs shares shot a whopping 77.3 percent on the news to an intra-day high of 86¢, though they cut some of their gains in the afternoon to close at 48.5¢.
Shares in energy retailer and coal-fired operator AGL Energy closed 1.7 percent to $8.72 after it scrapped long-term plans to spin off its coal and electricity retailing businesses.
President to resign
The company dropped its plans after activist shareholders led by Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes demanded a change in plans.
Mr Cannon-Brookes’ purchase of an 11.28 percent stake in April and May made it unlikely that the company could insure the 75 percent shareholder approval needed from investors at a June 15 meeting.
In response to the developments, AGL has announced that chairman Peter Botten will step down from the board after the appointment of a replacement independent chairman. Graeme Hunt will also step down as chief executive and managing director.
Shares in ANZ Bank closed 0.2 percent higher after it acknowledged the start of a civil suit by the regulator ASIC against the bank for allegedly misleading its customers about the available funds and balances in their credit card accounts.
On the resource side, Northern Territory-based hard rock lithium explorer Liontown Resources said it had agreed with Tesla to extend the cut-off date for its binding takedown term to June 6.
The agreement with Tesla covers the supply of up to 150,000 dry metric tons per year of spodumene concentrate produced in Kathleen Valley, expected in 2024.
That represents approximately one third of the project’s 500,000 tpa starting production capacity.
Elsewhere, the commercial real estate group Australian Unity Office Fund (AOF) received a non-binding indicative proposal from Aliro Group to acquire all issued units in AOF for $2.45 cash per unit.
U.S. stock markets are closed Monday for Memorial Day. In the euro-zone, Germany will report inflation data on Monday (Tuesday AEST), while France and Italy will report on Tuesday.
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