Opening Call: The Australian share market is to open lower.
U.S. stocks finished lower as the technology rebound lost steam. The 10-year Treasury note yield rose to 1.65% from 1.64% Monday. The WSJ Dollar Index was down 0.39% to 85.06.
U.S. oil prices ended lower, down from two-year highs, on potential progress in the Iran nuclear talks. Gold prices edged up for a fourth-straight session to settle at a four-month high.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.6%, led by materials and energy firms that rallied amid an uptick in commodity prices. The materials sector, which includes miners, and energy stocks, led the broader index and both rose about 1.6%.
U.S. stocks slipped, with investors retreating from shares of companies closely tied to the economy.
Shares of banks, industrial firms, energy companies and raw-materials producers led to declines in the S&P 500. The Dow industrials fell 0.8%, while the S&P 500 dropped 0.9%.
The Nasdaq Composite was down 0.6%. Stocks have been choppy in recent trading sessions as concerns about a rise in inflation weighed on sentiment. Investors are contending with a raft of unknowns, such as whether rising prices will prove temporary or more persistent, and whether the Federal Reserve will act by raising interest rates sooner than planned.
Gold inched higher to mark a fourth-straight session climb, with a weaker U.S. dollar and concerns surrounding inflation and market valuations, lifting prices to their highest finish since January.
June gold inched up by 40 cents, or less than 0.1%, to settle at $1,868 an ounce – the highest most-active contract finish since Jan. 7, FactSet data show. On Monday, the precious metal surged 1.6% to also settle at the highest since early January.
Oil futures retreated, with U.S. prices down from their highest finish in more than two years, and global benchmark prices only briefly topping $70 a barrel for the first time since mid-March.
Prices touched fresh intraday lows after a tweet from BBC Persia implied progress in the Iran nuclear talks.
West Texas Intermediate crude for June delivery fell 78 cents, or 1.2%, to settle at $65.49 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange after touching a fresh intraday low at $64.11. July Brent crude fell by 75 cents, or 1.1%, at $68.71 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe, after tapping a low at $67.28.
Major currencies were mixed against the US dollar in European and US trade. The Euro rose from lows near US$1.2165 to highs near US$1.2230 and was near US$1.2225 at the US close. The Aussie dollar broadly held between US77.80 cents and US78.15 cents and was near US77.90 cents at the US close. And the Japanese yen rose from near 109.16 yen per US dollar to JPY108.83 and was near JPY108.90 at the US close.
European sharemarkets were mixed on Tuesday. The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose by 0.2%. But while the German Dax index lost 0.1% (it hit record highs during the day), the UK FTSE index edged higher by just over 1 point or less than 0.1%. The UK jobless rate fell from 4.9% to 4.8% in the March quarter. After reporting earnings, shares of Vodafone fell by 8.9%. But the world’s
biggest maker of hearing aids, Sonova, rose 11.5% on expectations of stronger sales in 2021. In London trade shares in Rio Tinto fell by 0.4% and shares in BHP fell by 0.2%.
The Nikkei Stock Average closed 2.1% higher, led by gains in steel and insurance stocks, in hopes for economic reopening in more parts of the world.
Chinese stock markets closed the session mixed, losing some of the recovery momentum in the past two sessions. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.3%, marking its third-straight session higher.
The Shenzhen Composite Index rose 0.2%, while the ChiNext Price Index fell 0.7%. Oil firms were the top performers after crude prices hit a two-year overnight. But the gains were offset by losses in the pharmaceutical sector.