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Why Altura Mining, Appen, Bionomics, & Newcrest shares climbed higher today

The S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) has continued its disappointing run and is down a further 0.75% to 6,128.7 points in afternoon trade.

Four shares that have defied the market decline and pushed higher today are listed below. Here’s why they are on the rise:

The Altura Mining Ltd (ASX: AJM) share price has jumped 5% to 14.2 cents after the lithium miner announced the achievement of commercial production at its 100% owned Altura Lithium Mine in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. According to the release, in recent weeks the company has achieved an average of 541 tonnes per day of production, which represents 84% of its nameplate capacity.

The Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) share price has pushed 5% higher to $23.30. Today’s gain appears to have been triggered by a broker note out of Citi. According to the note, the broker has upgraded the market darling’s shares to a buy rating with an increased price target of $28.04. The broker made the move after factoring the acquisition of Figure Eight into its forecasts. Though, it is worth noting that Citi handled the capital raising to fund the acquisition.

The Bionomics Ltd (ASX: BNO) share price is up 5.5% to 19 cents. This gain means that the biotech company’s shares are now up 81% since the start of the year. The catalyst for this impressive gain was a recent update on its BNC210 drug candidate. Last year the company’s shares were hammered after its PTSD trial results fell well short of expectations. However, in February the company revealed that further data analysis has shown the potential for significant patient benefit when the drug exposure is adequate.

The Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX: NCM) share price has climbed 3% to $25.21 after the gold price pushed higher overnight following the weakening of the U.S. dollar. In addition to this, a note out of Citi reveals that its analysts have retained their buy rating and $29.00 price target on the gold miner’s shares after its announced plans to acquire a 70% stake in the Canada-based Red Chris project from Imperial Metals Corporation.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Appen Ltd. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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