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Morning Bell 10 April

Bell Direct
April 10, 2024

Wall St closed mostly higher across the major indices on Tuesday as investors sat back in anticipation of the release of key inflation data out on Wednesday. The Dow Jones fell just 0.02%, the S&P500 gained 0.14%, and the Nasdaq rose 0.32%.

Key US inflation data is out later tonight which will indicate how well the Fed’s aggressive stance on interest rates has worked to tame inflation in the world’s largest economy. Economists’ are expecting core inflation rate, which excludes volatile items such as food and energy, to ease to 3.7% YoY for March and the overall inflation rate to increase to 3.4% in March from 3.2% in February amid escalating energy prices.

In Europe overnight, a pullback across markets in the region was experienced as investors look toward key economic data out later this week to gauge how local and global inflation is faring. The STOXX600 fell 0.6% on Tuesday, Germany’s DAX lost 1.32%, the French CAC fell 0.86%, and, in the UK, the FTSE100 ended the day down 0.11%.

Across Asia markets on Tuesday, regions closed mixed as investors assessed key consumer confidence data out of Japan and looked ahead to US inflation data out on Wednesday. Japan’s consumer confidence level rose to the highest level since May 2019, prompting Japan’s Nikkei to close up 1.08% on Tuesday, while South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.46% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng ended the day up 0.7%.

Locally, ASX started the week in positive territory which extended into Tuesday’s green close with the ASX200 ending the session up 0.45% led by materials stocks rising 1.5%. The materials rally was led by the rising price of iron ore on fresh hopes that China’s long-awaited economic recovery could be making some material progress thus driving demand outlook for iron ore.

Westpac consumer confidence data for April and NAB business confidence data for March were both released yesterday with starkly different results indicating a clear difference in consumer vs business confidence at present.

Westpac consumer confidence for April revealed a decline to minus 2.4% from minus 1.8% in March which is well below the rise to 0.5% economists were expecting, which paints a reading that Aussie consumers remain concerned over household finances and borrowing costs in the currently elevated interest rate environment.

NAB business confidence on the other hand surprised both markets and economists, coming in at a rise of to 1 index point from a flat reading in February and above economists’ expectations of a decline to -3 points, indicating business sentiment is improving down under as inflationary pressures continue to ease.

Medical equipment company Ansell rallied over 6% on Tuesday after the company completed its $400m underwritten placement to fund the purchase of a Kimtech and Kleenguard brands from US personal care giant, Kimberley-Clark Corporation.

Central bank purchases of gold and rising geopolitical tensions also boosted the price of the precious commodity to a fresh record high yesterday of US$2353.79/ounce.

What to watch today:

  • Ahead of the local midweek trading session, the SPI futures are expecting the ASX to open 0.31% higher on the back of Wall Street’s rally overnight.
  • On the commodities front this morning, oil is trading 1.54% lower at US$85.22/barrel, gold is up 0.4% at US$2349/ounce and iron ore is up 3.43% at US$105.50/tonne.
  • AU$1.00 is buying US$0.66, 100.45 Japanese Yen, 52.17 British Pence, and NZ$1.09.

Trading Ideas:

  • Bell Potter has maintained a buy rating on mining services and development company Develop Global (ASX:DVP), however, have decreased the 12-month price target on the company from $4.10 to $3.30 amid the restart of the company’s Woodlawn project expected to recommence production in 1HCY25, with Bell Potter’s analyst seeing the upcoming financing options for the restart project as an important upcoming catalyst for the company.
  • And Trading Central has identified a bullish signal on Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) following the formation of a pattern over a period of 39-days which is roughly the same amount of time the share price may rise from the close of $7.36 to the range of $8.15 to $8.35 according to standard principles of technical analysis.

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