The Australian share market is set to open lower today after big name tech stocks dragged down the US market. Declines in technology weighed on the market, with Amazon and Intel dropping 5 per cent. Despite a late rally in the afternoon the Nasdaq ended the session almost 3 per cent lower and the Dow Jones fell almost 2 per cent. Concerns about international trade tensions, and, the Presidents continuing attack on Amazon have rattled investors.
On the commodities front there’s been a move to hard assets such as gold and copper which are both up while oil has fallen slightly.
Australian economic news:
Today the Reserve Bank meets but no change in monetary policy is expected. The official interest rate is expected to remain at 1.5 per cent. On Wednesday we can look out for the retail trade figures and building approvals for February. Finally on Thursday, Australia’s international trade data for February is released.
On Thursday the Australian share market closed lower with the S&P/ASX 200 Index closing 30 points lower at 5759.
Wall Street closed lower yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1.9 per cent to close at 23,644, the S&P 500 dropped 2.2 per cent to close at 2,582 and the NASDAQ fell 2.7 per cent to close at 6,870.
European markets were closed.
Asian markets closed lower: Tokyo’s Nikkei fell 0.3 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was closed, and China’s Shanghai Composite lost 0.2 per cent.
On Thursday the Australian share market closed lower with the S&P/ASX 200 Index closing 43 points lower at 5789.
Creditors of Retailer OrotonGroup (ASX:ORL) have backed a rescue plan that will see control of the company transferred to major shareholder Mr J Will Vicars.
The deal will enable the ongoing employment of more than 350 staff with their entitlements paid in full. The luxury handbag company went into administration last November amid declining sales. Unsecured creditors will receive between 36 and 58 cents in the dollar under the deal.
Shares in OrotonGroup (ASX:ORL) last traded at $0.44 in November prior to the company entering administration.
A number of companies are going ex-dividend today: Clime Capital (ASX:CAM) is paying 1.25 cents fully franked, Eildon Capital (ASX:EDC) is paying 1.93 cents fully franked and Freedom Food Group (ASX:FNP) is paying 2.25 cents also fully franked.
One Australian Dollar at 7:45AM was buying US76.62 cents, 54.55 Pence Sterling, 81.14 Yen and 62.29 Euro cents.
Gold has gained $18 to $US1345 an ounce.
Silver has added $0.32 to $US16.59 an ounce.
Oil has lost $2.09 to $US62.85 a barrel.
The three most traded cryptocurrencies are trading higher: Bitcoin has gained 2.04 per cent to US$7032, Ethereum gained about 0.5 per cent to US$384 and EOS has gained 2.6 per cent to US$5.82