Global markets retrace, commodities taper, futures down 1%

By Trevor Hoey. Published at Aug 17, 2020, in Market Wrap

Supported by a big week from the banks, the S&P/ASX 200 index (XJO) finished 2% higher on a week- on-week basis at 6126 points, helped by a rally of about 0.6% or 35 points on Friday.

However, this strong run looks set to come to a halt on Monday with mainly negative trends emerging from overseas markets on Friday, largely in response to a lack of fiscal stimulus news in the US.

The ASX SPI200 index is down 58 points to 6026 points, pointing to a significant retracement.

There is little in the way of domestic macroeconomic data to be released this week, suggesting our market will be mainly swayed by global trends and a fairly big week on the reporting season front.

Those reporting this week include JB Hi-Fi and GWA Group (consumer goods), Beach Energy, Altium (tech hardware) and BlueScope Steel.

24 hours

In the Asia-Pacific region, the Shanghai Composite finished the week strongly on Friday, increasing 1.2% to 3360 points.

The Nikkei 225 gained 40 points or 0.2% to close at 23,289 points.

The Hang Seng was out of sync with the rest of the region, shedding 0.2% or 47 points as it closed at 25,183 points.

It was all red ink in Europe as indicated by the Stoxx 600 which came off 1.2%.

The FTSE 100 was one of the weaker performers, spiralling 1.5% or 90 points to close at 5769 points.

In mainland Europe, the CAC 40 mirrored the FTSE 100, shedding nearly 1.6% or 80 points to close at 4962 points.

The DAX was one of the better performers, only coming off 0.7%, closing just above the 12,900 point mark.

It was a mixed bag in the US with the Dow eking out a 0.1% gain to close at 27,931 points.

The S&P 500 finished just in the red at 3372 points, while the NASDAQ shed 26 points to close at 30,019 points.

Interestingly, the S&P 500’s close is only 21 points shy of the record set earlier in the week.

After falling below US$2000 per ounce during the week, gold settled in the vicinity of US$1950 per ounce and there appeared to be support for it at that price on Friday.

After pushing well above US$45 per barrel early in the week, the Brent Crude Oil Continuous Contract finished just below that mark, broadly in line with where it started the week.

Iron ore has consolidated around US$122 per tonne.

On the base metals front, nickel rallied strongly on Friday to finish just shy of the previous week’s high of US$6.50 per pound, a level it hadn’t traded at for more than six months.

The Australian dollar strengthened on Friday to finish close to the high of about US$0.718 set earlier in the week.

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