Dow and iron ore record highs lift sentiment: ASX to open higher


The ASX200 is poised to open the trading day on a positive note, following strong performances by Wall Street’s benchmarks and a surging iron ore price.

The Dow Jones notched another record high for the second day in a row, as jobless claims was 29,000 below consensus and hit another post-pandemic low.

Over in Europe, the benchmark pan-European STOXX 600 index closed 0.1 per cent lower, weighed down by declines in travel and tourism stocks led by British firm Trainline’s weak results. The Bank of England decided to decelerate its quantitative easing programme but still maintain its monetary stance to support the economy

The Asia- Pacific region was a mixed picture, as Japanese and South Korean indices all surged after their holiday breaks, while mainland Chinese stocks fell.

The price of benchmark iron ore on the other hand entered record territory and surpassed the $200 mark, on the back of bullish data on profits from the Chinese steel industry

Economic news

Today, the AiGroup Performance of Services index is due to be released while the Reserve Bank’s economic forecasts take the spotlight when they issue the statement on monetary policy, as mentioned earlier.

To the figures from around the globe: Wall Street closed higher yesterday: The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.93 per cent to 34,549, the S&P 500 gained 0.82 per cent to 4202 and the Nasdaq closed 0.37 per cent higher at 13,633.

European markets closed higher: London’s FTSE gained 0.5 per cent, Paris added 0.3 per cent and Frankfurt closed 0.2 per cent higher.

Asian markets closed mixed: Tokyo’s Nikkei gained 1.8 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.8 per cent while and China’s Shanghai Composite closed 0.2 per cent lower.

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

Yesterday, the Australian share market closed 0.5 per cent lower at 7062.

Company news

Biomedical heavyweight CSL (ASX:CSL) is set to finalise the acquisition of a global license to the haemophilia B treatment developed by Netherlands-based gene therapist UniQure. The AMT-061 programme is designed to provide long-term benefits to patients suffering from haemophilia B, by rectifying the shortage of these patients’ blood clotting protein called Factor IX. CSL believes it has the potential to become the first-ever gene therapy for hemophilia B patients to receive US FDA approval. The license deal will enable the $126 billion company to commercialise and distribute this treatment, diversifying the products suite of CSL’s US subsidiary. The ASX-listed biotechnology company is required to fulfill its payment of $US450 million to the product developer by May 13.  Shares in CSL (ASX:CSL) closed 0.28 per cent lower at $276.89 yesterday.

Turning to currencies

One Australian Dollar at 7:40 AM was buying 77.84 US cents, 56.04 Pence Sterling, 84.93 Yen and 64.54 Euro cents.


To Commodities 

Iron ore has gained 4.9 per cent to US$201.88.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 4.4 per cent.

Gold has gained $31.40 to US$1816 an ounce.
Silver has added $0.96 to US$27.48 an ounce.
Oil has lost $0.92 to US$64.71 a barrel.