The Australian share market is expected to start the day higher after most base metals prices finished the offshore session higher, and Wall Street put in another mixed performance.
At 0700 AEST on Friday, the Australian share price futures index was up 12 points, or 0.2 per cent, at 6,092 points.
Copper prices hit a one-week high as the greenback weakened and financial markets waited for the outcome of China-US trade talks in Beijing.
The Australian share market on Thursday posted its fifth straight day of gains, fuelled by miners, retailers and IT stocks, taking the share market’s major indexes to a three month high.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 48.1 points, or 0.8 per cent at 6,098.3 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index was up 50.3 points, or 0.82 per cent, at 6,187 points.
In economics news on Friday, the Reserve Bank releases its Statement on Monetary Policy, which includes the central bank’s latest economic forecasts.
In equities news Macquarie Group releases its full year results.
The S&P 500 ended lower on Thursday after a choppy session as disappointing earnings reports from several companies offset strong economic data.
A sharp drop after the open had pushed the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average below their 200-day moving averages, a key technical indicator of longer-term momentum. But both indexes pared losses to rise back above those levels, with the Dow edging up slightly by the market’s close.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 5.17 points, or 0.02 per cent, to close at 23,930.15, the S&P 500 lost 5.94 points, or 0.23 per cent, to 2,629.73 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 12.75 points, or 0.18 per cent, to 7,088.15.
Shares of insurer American International Group Inc and drug distributor Cardinal Health Inc plunged after the companies reported quarterly results. AIG, down 5.3 per cent, and Cardinal Health, down 21.4 per cent, were among the biggest drags on the S&P 500.
The spot price of gold in Sydney at 0700 AEST was $US1,311.22 per fine ounce, from $US1,308.10 per fine ounce on Thursday.
IRON ORE: $66.68 -0.57 (June contract)
Oil prices climbed back from early losses as equities rebounded and a major North Sea oil terminal temporarily shut down, halting the flow of Brent crude.
The U.S. dollar traded in a tight range, as investors pored over a mixed bag of the latest economic data, a day after the Federal Reserve’s policy statement.
The Fed left interest rates unchanged on Wednesday, as expected, but the currency market offered a lukewarm reaction to U.S. policy makers.
The ICE U.S. Dollar Index, which measures the buck against a basket of six currencies, was down 0.1% at 92.402. The index on Wednesday rose marginally and hit its highest level since late December during the session.
The broader WSJ U.S. Dollar Index fell 0.4% to 86.03.
The euro climbed to $1.1994 from $1.1950 on Wednesday, while the British pound slipped slightly, fetching $1.3577, down from $1.3575.
The Australian dollar is slightly higher as the greenback’s rally following the US Federal Reserve meeting runs out of steam.
At 0635 AEST on Friday, the local currency was worth 75.31 US cents, from 75.17 US cents on Thursday.
Britain’s top share index slipped on Thursday as a tumble in Smith & Nephew’s shares and weakness across financials and health stocks dragged the FTSE 100 off a three-month high.
Despite a firmer start to trading and a weaker pound, the blue chip FTSE 100 turned lower and ended the session down 0.54 per cent at 7,502.69 points, only slightly outperforming a negative European market.
Germany’s DAX 30 was down 0.88 per cent, and France’s CAC40 fell 0.5 per cent.
Results dominated trading with sharp falls for some stocks, but investors remained positive on the overall picture for the UK earnings season.
Shares in Smith & Nephew had their worst performance in close to 10 years, down seven per cent after Europe’s biggest artificial hip and knee maker downgraded its revenue and profit forecasts following a weak first quarter.
Asian shares slipped on Thursday as hopes waned for real progress in China-US trade talks, while the US dollar consolidated recent bumper gains after the Federal Reserve reaffirmed the outlook for more rate hikes.
Souring the mood were reports the Trump administration is considering executive action to restrict some Chinese companies’ ability to sell telecoms equipment in the United States.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.5 per cent, while South Korean stocks stumbled 0.7 per cent.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index skidded 1.3 per cent but Chinese shares bucked the trend.
The blue chip CSI 300 was up 0.8 per cent but not far from an eight-month low hit in April.
Japan’s Nikkei was closed for a holiday.
On Thursday, New Zealand’s S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.62 per cent, to 8,546.88.