ASX 200 rises 0.5%

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ASX 200

The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) went up 0.5% today in a pretty quiet day for the ASX.

Here are some of the highlights from the ASX:

Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT)

Afterpay, one of the leading buy now, pay later businesses in the world, has seen its share price reach a new high today.

The Afterpay share price rose another 5.3% today to finish to just over $122. It was among the best performers in the ASX 200. It has risen a long way from the $8.90 on 23 March 2020.

Dusk Group Ltd (ASX: DSK)

The fragrance business gave an update today. The Dusk share price went up 12.8% in reaction to this update.

Management said that strong sales and earnings growth has continued across the months of November and December. Dusk said it also finished the half with a well-balanced inventory position, no drawn bank debt and significant surplus cash. It had $33.5 million of net cash at the end of the first half of FY21.

Dusk said its FY21 half-year guidance for sales is a range of $90 million to $90.5 million, up from $58.7 million in the FY20 first half.

Its earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) guidance for the FY21 first half is between $26 million to $27 million, up from $9.7 million in the prior corresponding period.

Peter King, the CEO of Dusk, said: “The results delivered across the first half of FY21 are well ahead of the results delivered in the prior corresponding period despite a significant period of disrupted trade in Melbourne. They build on the strong results delivered across the past three years and further demonstrate the success of our focused strategy and the ability of our team to execute, including in a volatile environment where agility has been key.”

Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT)

The Beach Energy share price was the worst performer in the ASX 200 today after providing an update.

The oil business gave an update about its Ironbark 1 exploration well in offshore Western Australia.

The well was drilled to a total depth of 5,618 metres measured depth, intersecting the primary target of the Mungaroo Formation at 5,275 metres. No significant hydrocarbon shows were encountered in the target sandstone.

The exploration well will be plugged and abandoned, in-line with the pre-drill planning.

Pacific Current Group Ltd (ASX: PAC)

Asset management outfit Pacific, which invests in asset managers, announced it has entered into an agreement to buy a minority stake in Astarte Capital Partners.

Astarte was founded in 2015, it’s a London-based investment manager focused on private market real asset strategies.

Pacific said that Astarte’s model is distinctive in that it provides anchor or seed capital, working capital and fundraising support to operating experts and emerging investment managers to support their growth.

Pacific is going to invest £4.4 million to provide both operating capital and buy out passive shareholders. Approximately 35% of the consideration may be deferred until July 2021. Astarte’s management ownership will increase significantly as a result of this transaction.

In exchange for the investment, Pacific will receive approximately 40% of Astarte’s net income.

Pacific CEO and chief investment officer said: “PAC is pleased to partner with Astarte given its exceptional team and differentiated investment strategy. Stavros and Teresa are true innovators in the private markets space, and we are excited to help them build on what they have already created. We believe Astarte’s business is at an inflection point and we expect 2021 to be a breakout year for the firm.”

The Pacific share price was flat today.

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Motley Fool contributor Tristan Harrison has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of AFTERPAY T FPO. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

The post ASX 200 rises 0.5% appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

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