Australian shares are set for a negative start to the week following a US sell-off on Friday. Disappointing economic data out of the US and Germany renewed investors fears of a global economic slowdown. US stocks posted their worst fall since early January. Bank stocks lead the declines on the Dow Jones after treasury yields fell. The yield curve inverted for the first time in 12 years in response to the economic data. Global oil prices also dipped on Friday with traders worried about the outlook for global crude demand.
In geo-political news, special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation did not find sufficient evidence that President Donald Trump conspired or coordinated with the Russian government's 2016 election interference. President Donald Trump responded with a tweet saying “No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!”
The Manufacturing purchasing index fell from 53.0 to 52.5 missing a forecast 53.6 and reigniting fears of a global downturn
This week we can expect regional population growth figures from the ABS on Wednesday. On Thursday Job market estimates (Feb) and Finance and Wealth data (Dec) and on Friday the Reserve Bank releases the Financial Aggregates publication.
Wall Street closed lower on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 1.8 per cent to close at 25,502, the S&P 500 shed 1.9 per cent to close at 2,801 and the NASDAQ fell 2.5 per cent to close at 7643.
European markets closed lower on Friday: London’s FTSE dipped over 2 per cent, Paris also fell over 2 per cent and Frankfurt dropped 1.6 per cent.
Asian markets closed higher on Friday: Tokyo’s Nikkei gained 0.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.14 per cent while China’s Shanghai Composite closed 0.1 per cent higher.
Taking all of this into equation, the ASX futures are down 50 points. On Friday, the Australian share market closed 0.5 per cent higher or 28 points at 6195.
In company news
McGrath (ASX:MEA) has announced subdued market conditions have continued in the second half of FY19 with recent market data indicating national dwelling values are continuing to fall and transaction volumes remain more than 20 per cent below the prior year in both Sydney and Melbourne markets. The real estate company says based on the unaudited management accounts year to date, the company has generated an underlying EBITDA loss for the eight months ended 28 February 2019 of $4.5 million. Trading conditions for March are also below expectations. McGrath says if current trends remain continue further losses in the final quarter are expected. Shares in McGrath (ASX:MEA) last traded at $0.26 cents on 20th of March.
Bega Cheese Ltd (ASX:BGA) is paying 5.5 cents fully franked
Briscoe Group (ASX:BGP) is paying 11.5897 cents unfranked
Big River Industries Ltd (ASX:BRI) is paying 2.2 cents fully franked
Cochlear Limited (ASX:COH) is paying 155 cents fully franked
Cedar Woods Properties Limited (ASX:CWP) is paying 18 cents fully franked
Gale Pacific Limited (ASX:GAP) is paying 1 cents unfranked
Seek Limited (ASX:SEK) is paying 24 cents fully franked
Seven Group Holdings (ASX:SVW) is paying 21 cents fully franked
One Australian Dollar at 7:40AM was buying 70.82US cents, 53.62 Pence Sterling, 77.85 Yen and 62.70 Euro cents.
Iron ore futures suggest a 0.4 per cent gain.
Gold has added $5.10 to US$1319 an ounce.
Silver has dropped $0.03 to US$15.41 an ounce.
Oil has lost $0.94 to US$59.04 a barrel.