Monday: 19th March 2018

OPENING CALL: The Australian market looks to open higher with SPI Futures up 27 points.

The Australian share market is expected to open higher, following some modest gain on Wall Street at the end of last week, ahead of a likely interest rate hike by the US Federal Reserve.
The S&P 500 and the Dow Industrials rose on Friday, boosted by strong industrial output numbers, though all three of Wall Street’s major indexes posted losses for the week.

Overnight Summary


Market Quotes by TradingView

Each Market In Focus

Australian Market

The Australian share market is expected to open higher, following some modest gain on Wall Street at the end of last week, ahead of a likely interest rate hike by the US Federal Reserve.
At 0700 AEDT on Monday, the Australian share price futures index was up 27 points, or 0.45 per cent, at 5,974.
The Australian share market on Friday closed higher, led by a surge of support for consumer-related stocks following Wesfarmers’ announcement of plans to spin off supermarket giant Coles.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index ended Friday up 28.5 points, or 0.48 per cent, at 5,949.4 point, while the broader All Ordinaries index was up 28.2 points, or 0.47 per cent, at 6,055.8 points
In economic news on Monday, CoreLogic releases its weekly capital city house prices report, and in equities news, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission holds its annual forum.

US Markets

The S&P 500 and the Dow Industrials rose on Friday, boosted by strong industrial output numbers, though all three of Wall Street’s major indexes posted losses for the week.
February industrial production jumped 1.1 per cent, the largest increase in four months.
Energy led the major sectors of the S&P 500 with a 1.0 per cent gain, as oil prices rose 1.7 per cent.
Friday’s gains came at the end of a rocky week dominated by concerns of a US trade war with China and political turmoil, which began with the ouster of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Stocks traded in a narrow range, Lerner said, as investors unwound positions in futures and options contracts expiring on Friday, in a phenomenon known as “quadruple-witching.”
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 72.85 points, or 0.29 per cent higher, to end the week at 24,946.51, the S&P 500 gained 4.68 points, or 0.17 per cent, to 2,752.01 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.25 points, or 0.01 per cent, to 7,481.99.

Commodities

Gold inched lower Friday, hurt by a rise in Treasury yields and a slightly stronger dollar ahead of next week’s Federal Reserve meeting.
IRON ORE: $67.97 -1.58 (April contract)

Oil Futures

Oil futures rose sharply Friday to end the week higher as investors focused on escalating geopolitical risk as President Donald Trump reshuffled his cabinet.

Forex

The U.S. dollar rose, supported by rising short-term bond yields and an increase in government debt issuance.
The WSJ Dollar Index, which measures the currency against a basket of 16 others, rose 0.1% to 83.96. The U.S. dollar was up 0.1% to $1.2291 euro and declined 0.3% versus the yen to 105.98. The dollar rose for the fourth consecutive week, and has gained 1.1% during that time.
Demand for dollars has been bolstered by an increase in issuance by the U.S. Treasury of short-term bills and notes, which has absorbed some of the currency from overseas holders.
Australian Dollar:
The Australian dollar has fallen to its lowest level since Christmas, as metals prices fall on the back of worries about a possible international
trade war.
At 0635 AEDT on Monday, the local currency was worth 77.19 US cents, down from 77.93 US cents on Friday.

European Markets

A takeover offer for NEX Group sent its shares shooting up by almost a third on Friday, while the FTSE 100 registered a weekly decline in spite of a boost from energy and financials stocks.
Financial technology company NEX Group rose 31 per cent after saying it received a preliminary takeover offer from CME. Speculation that the offer could trigger a bidding war is likely to support the shares.
The FTSE 100 rose 0.34 per cent on Friday, leaving it 0.7 per cent down on the week.
On Friday, Germany’s DAX was up 0.35 per cent, and the French stockmarket was up 0.29 per cent.

Asian Markets

Asian stocks slid on Friday as reports of more chaos in the Trump administration tested investors’ nerves, already frayed by fears that US tariffs could hurt the global economy and trigger a trade war.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.2 per cent in early trade. Japan’s Nikkei was down 0.6 per cent.
The Washington Post, meanwhile, reported that President Donald Trump has decided to remove H.R. McMaster as his national security advisor.
The news came just days after following the recent departure of two key officials, former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and top economic advisor Gary Cohn, from the Trump administration.
The S&P/NZX 50 index on Friday rose 0.12 per cent, to 8,477.08.

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