The local share market is picking up a little following four sessions of losses, with the All Ordinaries Index (XAO) up 21.8pts or 0.5pct to 4078.1 at lunchtime in the East. There was a little bit of investor apathy in Europe overnight ahead of yet another European Union summit to discuss the region's debt crisis while US markets rose on upbeat housing data.
A trader enters an order by a post that sells JP Morgan Chase stock on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
Locally, financial and energy stocks are faring best with the energy sector firmer by 0.4pct and the financials up 0.9pct.
Media stocks are continuing to steal headlines, with News Corporation (NWS) confirming that it is contemplating splitting its business in two. The split would see the better performing entertainment unit distance itself from the publishing business in the wake of last year's damaging phone hacking scandal at Britain's News of the World. NWS shares are up 3.5pct to $21.52, a four year high.
Meanwhile it's understood staff at publisher Fairfax (FXJ) have received a 25 page booklet outlining operational and editorial changes. FXJ shares are firmer by 0.9pct to $0.555.
Elsewhere building products maker Boral (BLD) has cut its full year profit forecast for the second time within three months, blaming bad weather and delays to major projects. BLD now expects net profit for the year to June 30 to come in between $100-$150 million, before one off items. BLD shares are were by 2pct to $3.13.
A slight improvement on US equity markets overnight has seen the Aussie dollar strengthen a little. At 12.30pm AEST the Aussie is worth US100.59c, £0.6434 and €80.5c.
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