Global supply chain fears grow as Suez Canal blocked for third day: Aus shares set to open higher

Market Reports

by Katrina Bullock


Wall Street ended higher overnight after the US Department of Labor reported the lowest weekly level of new jobless claims since the onset of the pandemic a year ago. This optimism is set to flow through to the Australian market, with Australian futures indicating an upbeat start to the day. Meanwhile the 400-metre-long container ship blocking the Suez Canal showed no signs of budging for a third day deepening global supply chain concerns. The CEO of Dutch salvage company Boskalis which has been hired to fix the problem says “it might take weeks”. 206 container ships are logjammed at either end of the canal and now contemplating a costly and time-consuming voyage around Africa to reach their destination.

Markets

Wall Street closed higher yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.6 per cent to 32,619, the S&P 500 added 0.5 per cent to 3910 and the NASDAQ closed 0.1 per cent higher at 12,978

European markets closed mixed, London’s FTSE fell 0.6 per cent, Paris gained 0.1 per cent and Frankfurt closed 0.1 per cent higher.

Asian markets closed mixed, Tokyo’s Nikkei gained 1.1 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.1 per cent and China’s Shanghai Composite closed 0.1 per cent lower.

Taking all of this into equation, the SPI futures are pointing to a 0.3 per cent gain.

Yesterday, the Australian share market closed 0.2 per cent higher at 6791.

Company news 

Shares in AMP (ASX:AMP) dipped over 3.6 per cent yesterday and entered a trading halt after the Australian Financial Review reported that Group CEO Francesco De Ferrari was set to resign by the end of the day. Mr De Ferrari has had a rough ride at the company. He took the helm in 2018 following a leadership shakeup prompted by the explosive discoveries of the Hayne Royal Commission. He then oversaw major restructuring during Covid 19, and suffered severe backlash when the news broke last year that the company had promoted Boe Pahari to CEO of AMP Capital, despite settling a $2.2 million sexual harassment claim against him. Under Mr De Ferrari’s leadership shares in the troubled financial services giant have fallen 40 per cent. The AFR report asserted that AMP Australia’s CEO Scott Hartley would backfill the role while the company looked for a longer term replacement. AMP released a short statement after the close of trade last night denying that Mr De Ferrari had left the company. The press release was notably silent on whether he would remain with the company in the longer term. Shares in AMP (ASX:AMP) closed 3.61 per cent lower at $1.34 yesterday.

Currencies

One Australian Dollar at 7:20 AM was buying 75.84 US cents, 55.20 Pence Sterling, 82.75 Yen and 64.45 Euro cents.

Commodities

Iron Ore has lost 0.9 per cent to US$159.85
Iron Ore futures are flat.
Gold has lost $8.40 to US$1727 an ounce.
Silver was down $0.10 to US$25.14 an ounce.
Oil was lost $2.75 to US$58.43 a barrel.