The Australian share market looks set to open lower this morning as tensions once again increase between China and the US. US President Trump has mentioned tariffs for China as a renewed trade war seems inevitable. Meanwhile, states across the US are reopening after some coronavirus lockdowns despite cases increasing by 2.3 per cent in the past 24 hours, below the one-week daily average. There are plans to get the drug remdesivir to patients within days after getting US backing for emergency use. New York saw hospitalizations decline over the weekend. Russia reported its highest number of new cases at 10,000. The daily toll fell in the UK and Italy and Spain recorded the fewest deaths in more than six weeks. Back home a busy week lies ahead with a Reserve Bank Board meeting and quarterly Statement on Monetary Policy.
Wall Street closed lower on Friday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 2.6 per cent to close at 23,724, the S&P 500 dropped 2.8 per cent to close at 2831 and the NASDAQ fell 3.2 per cent to 8605.
In European markets, London’s FTSE fell 2.3 per cent on Friday while Paris and Frankfurt were closed.
In Asian markets, Nikkei fell 2.8 per cent while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and China’s Shanghai Composite were closed.
Taking all of this into equation, the SPI futures are pointing to 0.1 per cent fall.
On Friday, the Australian share market dropped 276 points (5.01 per cent) to close at 5246.
Local economic news
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) issues the March building approvals series.
The Melbourne Institute releases the April inflation gauge.
the Reserve Bank Board meets but no change in settings is expected. Already maximum monetary stimulus is being applied. The ABS’ weekly payroll jobs and wages data is due and the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries issues the April car sales data. The AiGroup releases its construction index.
ABS releases the retail sales data for the March quarter and lending indicators for March and the Living Cost Indexes for the March quarter.
AiGroup will release its purchasing manager’s index for the services sector.
Reserve Bank issues the keenly-awaited Statement on Monetary Policy. It is a difficult time to forecast, but investors will be looking to guidance from the RBA, even if the forecasts are only expressed in broad ranges.
Afterpay (ASX:APT) is pleased to welcome Tencent Holdings as a substantial shareholder of Afterpay. This was confirmed by the lodgement of a notice of initial substantial holder on the Australian Securities Exchange on 1 May 2020. Tencent is a listed company on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The company provides Internet valueadded services, including digital entertainment, online advertising, and FinTech and cloud services to users. Its communications platforms include Weixin, WeChat and QQ. Its Weixin Pay service is the leading mobile payments platform in China, facilitating an average of over 1 billion commercial transactions per day. Shares in Afterpay (ASX:APT) closed 6.5 per cent lower at $29.16 on Friday.
One Australian Dollar at 7:00 AM was buying 64.16 US cents, 51.42 Pence Sterling, 68.59 Yen and 58.46 Euro cents.
Gold has gained $6.70 to US$1701 an ounce.
Silver was down $0.04 cents to US$14.94 an ounce.
Oil has gained $0.94 to US$19.78 a barrel.