ASX 200 down 0.4%: Afterpay delivers stellar Q3 growth, Rio Tinto Q1 update

Afterpay Ltd (ASX:APT) and Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX:WOW) shares are making waves on the ASX 200 on Tuesday…

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At lunch on Tuesday, the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) has followed the lead of US markets and is sinking lower. The benchmark index is currently down 0.4% to 7,037.9 points.

Here’s what is happening on the market today:

Afterpay Q3 update

The Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT) share price is edging lower despite the release of a strong third quarter update. For the three months ended 31 March, Afterpay reported underlying sales growth of 104% over the prior corresponding period. Positively, the company also revealed that its gross losses continue to remain below historical rates in all operating regions. Finally, management advised that it is actively looking into listing in the United States.

Woolworths’ investment

The Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW) share price is lower today despite announcing a major investment. According to the release, Woolworths is investing $223 million to increase its stake in data science and advanced analytics business Quantium from 47% to 75%. Management believes the combination of Quantium’s advanced analytics capability and Woolworths’s retail capabilities can unlock value across its entire retail ecosystem.

Rio Tinto Q1 update

The Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) share price is trading broadly flat today following the release of its first quarter production update. For the three months ended 31 March, the company achieved Pilbara iron ore shipments of 77.8 million tonnes. This was 7% higher than the first quarter of 2020. However, production was down 2% on the prior corresponding period to 76.4 million tonnes. This was driven by above average wet weather in the mines through February and fixed plant reliability. Guidance for the full year has been maintained.

Tech shares on watch

The best performer on the ASX 200 on Tuesday has been the Mineral Resources Limited (ASX: MIN) share price with a 3% gain. This has been driven by a bullish broker note out of Macquarie. The worst performer has been the Challenger Ltd (ASX: CGF) share price with a 12% decline. This morning the company released its third quarter update. While its performance has been solid, investors appear disappointed that it is only guiding to the low end of its guidance range.

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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 and has recommended Challenger Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of AFTERPAY T FPO and Woolworths Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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