- The benchmark index, S&P/ASX200, gained as much 0.3% to hit an all-time high of 7,417.60.
- BHP shares rose 1.8% to hit 52-week high on deal with Westshore Terminals Investment.
- Shares of Best & Less Group Holdings surged 6.5% on ASX debut.
- GPT Group shares fell 3.3% after it withdrew its guidance for 2021.
The Australian share market started the week on a positive note, hitting a fresh record high driven by solid gains across material and health care space. The benchmark index, S&P/ASX200, gained as much 0.3% to hit an all-time high of 7,417.60. The market witnessed surge in buying despite rise in COVID-19 cases as investors seemed to have set aside virus concerns and shifted focus to the corporate earnings season beginning this week.
Among individual stocks, mining firm Lynas Rare Earths (ASX:LYC), formerly Lynas Corporation Ltd, was the top percentage gainer on the ASX, rising over 9%. Meanwhile, gold miner Silver Lake Resources (ASX:SLR) emerged as the worst performer, falling nearly 6%.
Here are five stocks that grabbed the limelight today:
GPT Group withdraws guidance for 2021
Infrastructure company GPT Group (ASX: GPT) saw its shares falling as much as 3.3% to AU$4.59 after it withdrew its guidance for 2021. The Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) has withdrawn its funds from operation and distribution guidance, citing the uncertainty related to the duration and impacts of lockdowns in Sydney and Melbourne.
“In line with strengthening economic conditions, we have seen a strong recovery across our retail portfolio during the course of the first six months of his year,” said GPT CEO Bob Johnston.
“However, given the recent restrictions in both Sydney and Melbourne and the uncertainty as to when these restrictions will be lifted and the ongoing risk of additional measures, we believe it is prudent to withdraw FFO and distribution guidance for the full year,” Johnston added.
A2 Milk Company appoints new chief people and culture officer
Dairy products manufacturer A2 Milk Company (ASX: A2M) saw its shares decline over 6% to hit an intraday low of AU$6.36. The marketer of fresh milk and infant formula has appointed Amanda Hart as the baby formula’s chief people & culture officer. Hart will join a2 Milk from her most recent role as head of human resources, Australia and New Zealand, with Dyson Appliances. Hart will commence her role from 6 September and will report to David Bortolussi, the Managing Director and CEO.
BHP executes deal with Westshore Terminals Investment
BHP (ASX: BHP) shares rose 1.8% to hit a fresh high of AU$52.19 after the world’s second largest miner executed an agreement with Canadian company Westshore Terminals Investment. Westshore Terminals has struck a 30-year deal with BHP Canada Inc, a subsidiary of BHP Group, to provide port services to its proposed Jansen Potash Mine in Saskatchewan. As per the deal, Westshore is set to construct the infrastructure to handle potash at its Roberts Bank Terminal by 2026, with BHP funding the project.
Best & Less Group makes a strong debut on IPO listing
Shares of apparel and footwear retailer Best & Less Group Holdings Ltd (ASX: BST) made a strong debut on the ASX, in line with broader market. The retail stock gained 6.5% in opening trade to AU$2.3 against a listing price of AU$2.16. The company had received strong response for its AU$ AU$60 million IPO from institutional and retail investors. The IPO follows a AU$40 million equity investment from BB Retail Capital (BBRC), a private investment firm founded and chaired by retail entrepreneur Brett Blundy, who is set to join the BLG board as BBRC’s nominee.
Cann Group to raise funds worth AU$20M
Shares of Cann Group (ASX: CAN) tumbled as much as 16% to 32.5 cents after the company unveiled its plan to raise funds. The medicinal cannabis group has proposed to raise AU$20 million through institutional placement and a share purchase plan, subject to shareholder approval. The fund raise involves an institutional placement at 27.5 cents per share, at a 27.6% discount to Friday’s closing price. Besides, the firm will raise AU$10 million from retail shareholders via a share purchase plan at the same price as the placement price. The funds will be used to invest in the commissioning of its new manufacturing facility near Mildura. A part of the fund will also be used to expedite and strengthen Cann’s in-house extraction, laboratory and manufacturing capabilities.