On Friday the tech sector made a comeback, advancing more than 8% following Block’s quarterly results.
Block (ASX:SQ2) is the US payment company that acquired Afterpay last month, and its ASX listed shares jumped 32.5% on Friday to $153.75. Quarterly revenue surpassed analysts’ forecasts, increasing 29% higher than the year prior. Life360 (ASX:360) was another top performer. Now on Thursday, 360 fell 29% to $4.60 following its earnings report. The stock then rebounded on Friday, up 22% to $5.71. Meanwhile, Blackmores (ASX:BKL) was 10.5% lower, falling for the second consecutive session, after reporting a decline in revenue for its Australia and New Zealand region. Magellan Financial (ASX:MFG) also closed 10% lower, after reporting a further decline in its funds under management.
The most traded stocks by Bell Direct clients on Friday included Mount Gibson Iron (ASX:MGX), Transurban Group (ASX:TCL), Westpac (ASX:WBC), Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) and ANZ (ASX:ANZ).
US equities closed with strong gains on Friday. The Dow up 2.5%, and S&P500 up 2.3% and the tech heavy Nasdaq up 1.6%.
Following the rally in New York, the ASX200 is set to jump at the open this morning. The futures are suggesting a rise of 2.4% at the open.
What to watch today:
- In commodities, oil is lower at US$91.80 a barrel, following a rally in the prior session, that saw prices top US$100 for the first time since 2014. The gold price is also lower amid concerns over the economic impact of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. And the seaborne iron ore price is down to US$141 a tonne.
- In economic data, retail sales data for January will be released today.
- Approximately 15 companies are set to report their earnings results today, including the Bank of Queensland (ASX:BOQ), Lynas Rare Earths (ASX:LYC) and Mesoblast (ASX:MSB).
- Some big names are also set to go ex-dividend today, including Aurizon (ASX:AZJ), Credit Corp Group (ASX:CCP), Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN), and Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG).
- Bell Potter maintain their BUY rating on Infomedia (ASX:IFM), a leading provider of software solutions in the automotive industry. Following the company’s half year results, Bell Potter have decreased their price target from $2 to $1.85, considering the earnings changes as well as market movements and time creep. IFM reported revenue grew 24% to $59 million, 5% above Bell Potter’s forecast. IFM last closed at $1.43, implying 29.4% share price growth in a year.
- Trading Central have identified a bullish signal in Paladin Energy (ASX:PDN), indicating that the price may rise from the close of $0.77 to the range of $1.01 to $1.07, within 33 days. Bell Potter say PDN is a Speculative stock and have maintained their Hold rating.