Nvidia surge pushes Nasdaq to new record close

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A seven per cent surge in the Nvidia share price pushed the Nasdaq index to a new record close above the 17,000 level for the first time ever, outweighing negative news from a disappointing Treasury auction which saw yields move higher.

The Nasdaq finished the day 0.59 per cent higher at a record 17,019.88. The S&P 500 just managed to tip into positive territory closing 0.02 per cent higher, and the Dow Jones closed down 0.55 per cent.

The broader market and in particular the Dow was weighed down by a drop in Merck and other healthcare sector constituents. Healthcare names were broadly lower on Tuesday with the key vaccine developers and producers particularly hard hit following a strong move up for the month that had been driven by concerns over the spread of avian influenza. The virus H5N1 has moved from birds, including poultry, to dairy herds in the U.S. with the CDC also confirming two humans have now been infected by cattle in Texas and Michigan. Merck closed down over 2.5 per cent on the day.

In rates news, Treasury yields moved higher following a government auction that was met with weaker than expected demand. This sent 10-year note yields back above the key 4.5 per cent level. The US sold $US70 billion of five-year notes at 4.553 per cent — above the pre-auction level of 4.540 per cent, Bloomberg reported. An earlier offering of US $69 billion in two-year notes also came in on the soft side.
Investor focus will now turn to the personal income and expenditures report for April due out on Friday, which includes the PCE inflation reading.

Turning to US sectors, the best performer was Technology which closed up 1.38 per cent. The worst performer was Industrials which closed down 1.26 per cent closely followed by Healthcare which finished down 1.25 per cent.

In Australia, Westpac's April leading index will be released at 10:30 am local time, followed by the monthly CPI indicator and first-quarter construction work data at 11:30 am.

BHP has until 5pm London time to finalise terms with Anglo for a potential deal. Reports suggest BHP might request an extension as both companies still fundamentally disagree on the deal structure after six days of talks. The main issue is BHP's demand for Anglo to spin off its majority stakes in two South African miners, which Anglo opposes due to potential risks for its investors. Anglo wants BHP to either modify the structure or compensate its shareholders for any resulting loss of value.

Australia and the EU are joining forces to enhance investment in critical minerals, reducing reliance on China. This aligns with efforts by the US and allies to secure alternative sources for high-tech manufacturing. Australia is backing this with incentives and a $373M investment in exploration over the next decade.


The SPI futures are pointing to a 0.6 per cent fall.


One Australian dollar at 7.30am was buying 66.49 US cents.


Gold has gained 0.95 per cent. Silver has jumped 5.37 per cent. Copper has added 2.14 per cent. Oil has risen 2.71 per cent.

Figures around the globe

European markets closed lower. London’s FTSE fell 0.76 per cent, Frankfurt lost 0.52 per cent, and Paris closed 0.92 per cent lower.

Turning to Asian markets, Tokyo’s Nikkei fell 0.11 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.03 per cent while China’s Shanghai Composite closed 0.46 per cent lower.

Yesterday, the Australian share market closed 0.28 per cent lower at 7,766.71.

Nufarm (ASX:NUF) is paying 4 cents unfranked

Sources: Bloomberg, FactSet, IRESS, TradingView, UBS, Bourse Data, Trading Economics, CoinMarketCap.

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