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Aussie market’s winning streak ends at eight days

Daily Market Update

The Australian share market couldn’t continue its run of consecutive daily gains, closing it out at eight, making its longest winning streak since October 2017.  The streak came to an end on Thursday, with the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index losing 22.3 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 7,219, while the broader All Ordinaries index lost 26.8 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 7,412.

BHP eased 19 cents, or 0.4 per cent, to $45.05; Rio Tinto was down 32 cents, or 0.3 per cent, to $116.31; and Fortescue Metals gave up 2 cents to $21.57. Diversified miner South32 surrendered 8 cents, or 1.9 per cent, to $4.19.

Goldminers were a pocket of green, with Evolution Mining adding 3 cents, or 0.9 per cent, to $3.38; Newcrest Mining closing up 25 cents, also 0.9 per cent, at $28.28; and Regis Resources lifting 4 cents, or 1.9 per cent, to $2.20; but Gold Road Resources weakened 4.5 cents, or 2.5 per cent, to $1.76.

  • In lithium, producer Allkem softened 39 cents, or 3.5 per cent, to $10.83, and fellow producer Pilbara Minerals retreated 12 cents, or 3.2 per cent, to $3.61. Mineral Resources, which produces iron ore and lithium, dropped $2.76, or 3.5 per cent, to $76.16, while IGO, which mines nickel as well as lithium, gave up 16 cents, or 1.3 per cent, to $12.24. Of the project developers, Lake Resources walked back 2 cents, or 4.2 per cent, to 46 cents; Liontown Resources shed 7 cents, or 2.6 per cent, to $2.59; and Piedmont Lithium, which has delivery contracts with Tesla, dropped 4 cents, or 4.9 per cent, to 77 cents; but Patriot Battery Metals went against the trend, gaining 3.5 cents, or 2.6 per cent, to $1.37.

    Among the coal cohort, Whitehaven Coal fell 6 cents, or 0.9 per cent, to $6.94; New Hope Corporation was down 13 cents, or 2.2 per cent, to $5.86; Coronado Global Resources eased 2 cents, or 1.2 per cent, to $1.61; and Stanmore Resources lost 4 cents, or 1.2 per cent, to $3.31.

    Of the energy heavyweights, Woodside Energy lost 33 cents, or 1 per cent, to $33.89; Santos shed 2 cents to $7.14, and Brazilian-based producer Karoon Energy fell 7 cents, or 3 per cent, to $2.27.

    The major banks finished the day in the red, led by National Australia Bank, which was down 16 cents, or 0.6 per cent, to $27.88. ANZ slipped 11 cents, or 0.5 per cent, to $23.19; Commonwealth Bank retreated 5 cents to $99.01; and Westpac surrendered a single cent, to $21.77.

    On the industrial front, biotech giant CSL had a strong day, up $6.58, or 2.2 per cent to $300.18; while pipeline operator APA Group led the utilities sector, rising 22 cents, or 2.2 per cent, to $10.45, followed by AGL Energy with a 12-cent, or 1.5 per cent, lift to $8.32.

    Cooling job market expected in US

    In the US, the 30-stock Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 2.6 points to 333,485.29; the broader S&P 500 was 14.6 points, or 0.4 per cent, higher at 4,105.02; and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index rose 91.1 points, or 0.8 per cent, to 12, 087.96.

    US markets are awaiting the heavily anticipated jobs report for March, due out on Friday US time. Economists expect the labour market to have cooled and monthly job gains to slow, with consensus estimates landing at the 239,000 level, according to Refinitiv. That would be a big drop from February’s 311,000 jobs gained and well down on the 504,000 net gain in January.

    In the bond market, the US 10-year Treasury yield gained 1.6 basis points, to 3.303 per cent, while the more policy-sensitive 2-year yield was up 6.6 basis points, to 3.829 per cent.

    Gold slid US$12.40 overnight, or 0.6 per cent, to US$2,007.60 an ounce, while on the oil market, the global benchmark Brent crude oil grade lost 12 cents, to US$84.87 a barrel, and US West Texas Intermediate gained 9 cents, to US$80.70. The Australian dollar is buying 66.71 US cents this morning, down from 67.01 US cents at the local close on Thursday.

    James Dunn

    James is an experienced senior journalist and host of The Inside Network's industry events.

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