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ASX gains 0.7 per cent after IT stocks surge

Daily Market Update (43)

Tech, debt ceiling stoke rally, Dutch expansion for Collins Foods
 
The resilient run of the S&P/ASX200 continued on Thursday, with the market rallying 0.7% on signs a deal on the debt ceiling may be reached in the US.
 
In Australia, it was more positive news on the vaccine front with NSW hitting 70% double dose and the reopening set to commence on 11 October.
 
In a reversal of recent trends, the energy sector fell hardest, down 0.8%, with the tech sector jumping 2.8% on the back of Afterpay (ASX: APT) which was 3.1% higher.
 
The big news though was smaller player Sezzle (ASX: SZL) which moved 14.6% higher after more detailed emerged on their massive deal with Target (NYSE: TGT) in the US and global BNPL leader Affirm Holdings (NYSE: AFRM).
 
Every other sector was higher with financials and healthcare adding 1% after yesterday’s sell off, Challenger (ASX: CGF) gaining 3.6% and AGL Energy (ASX: AGL) 5.7% on limited data.
 
Shares in lithium miner Pilbara (ASX: PLS) also gained 6.7% after commissioning one of their plants.
 
Yum Brands, Wesfarmers looks to block API bid, Qube deal investigated
 
Australian KFC franchisee Collins Foods Ltd (ASX: CKF) neared a record high, gaining 6.9% on news they had agreed to purchase the rights for further store expansion in the Netherlands from US-listed Yum! Brands.
 
The corporate franchise agreement gives CKF the option of opening another 150 stores in the country, potentially increasing its network fivefold.
 
Qube (ASX: QUB) shares fell 0.6% after the ACCC announced they would be investigating the acquisition of the Newcastle Agri Terminal which they say occurred without approval.
 
Management responded suggesting it had no impact on competition and that the regulator had been informed several weeks before.
 
Wesfarmer’s (ASX: WES) pursuit of pharmacy chain Australian Pharmaceuticals (ASX: API) took another step forward with the board confirming they had purchased a 19.3% shareholding from Washington H Soul Pattinson (ASX: SOL) as previously agreed, shares were 1.7% higher.
 
Triple threat reduces, General Motor’s grand plans, China stocks rally
 
The triple threat facing investors in recent days appears to be easing all at once, sending markets to a three-day gain.
 
Russia appears set to follow through with an expansion in supply of natural gas, easing energy pressures in Europe, however the US indicated they would not be digging into strategic oil reserves to do the same.
 
Similarly, the debt ceiling is likely to be lifted before the weekend which boosted materials and consumer stocks more than most.
 
The Nasdaq is leading the way again, up 1.1%, with the Dow Jones and S&P 500 not far behind, up 1.0 and 0.8% respectively.
 
It was all about China though with concerns over tech stocks receding and Charlie Munger’s investment company reportedly increasing its stake in Alibaba (NYSE: BABA).
 
Shares moved over 8% higher, with Tencent also gaining over 5% as the bottom appears nearby.
 
Car manufacturer General Motors (NYSE: GM) has announced a target to double revenue by 2020 to US$280 billion as it seeks to become an innovation and market share leader in electric vehicles.
 
The group also announced a partnership with GE Renewable seeking to shore up supply of critical materials.

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