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Morning Bell 15 April

Bell Direct
April 15, 2024

Rising geopolitical tensions and inflation concerns were the drivers of Wall Street’s negative close on Friday with the Dow Jones suffering its worst session since January. The launch of attacks on Iran from Israel fuelled oil prices to surge over the weekend paired with fresh U.S. imports data added fuel to investors concerns of rising inflation pushing back the outlook for rate cuts in the world’s largest economy.

The Dow Jones fell 1.24% on Friday and 2.37% for the week, the S&P500 lost 1.46% on Friday and 1.56% for the week and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 1.62% on Friday and 0.45% for the week.

First quarter results in the U.S. have started being released with Wells Fargo sliding 0.4% on Q1 results while Citigroup declined 1.7% despite posting a beat in revenue. JPMorgan Chase fell 6% on Friday after the banking giant posted first quarter results including outlook for net interest income to likely come in slightly short of what Wall Street is expecting for 2024.

Over in Europe, markets closed mixed on Friday as investors digested key economic data and assessed the latest inflation reading out of the US. The STOXX600 rose 0.06% led by mining stocks rising 2.4%, Germany’s DAX fell 0.13%, the French CAC fell 0.16%, and, in the UK, the FTSE100 rallied 0.91%. British economic output increased by 0.1% MoM in February which was inline with expectations, and provides a further sign of slight improvement in economic stability following sluggish growth over recent months. The European Central Bank also announced the holding of interest rates for a fifth consecutive meeting on Thursday but gave its clearest signal yet that rate cuts are on the horizon in the near future.

In Asia on Friday, markets closed mixed in the region as economic data and key inflation readings sparked mixed investor reactions. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 2% and China’s CSI Index fell 0.81% following China’s exports falling more than expected in the month of March, coming in at a decline of 7.5% compared to the 2.3% fall economists were expecting.

Locally on Friday the ASX closed the final trading session of the week lower as investors continue to question rate cut hopes out of the RBA and Fed. The ASX200 fell 0.3% on Friday but rose 0.3% for the week. Consumer staples and discretionary stocks weighed on the market on Friday but some of the heavy losses were offset by strong gains for utilities and tech stocks.

Star Entertainment Group fell 7.3% on Friday after reporting a significant decline in revenues from its gaming rooms, while Cettire dropped almost 7% despite preliminary sales figures for Q3 coming in strong.

What to watch today:

  • Ahead of the local trading session here in Australia to start the new trading week, the SPI futures are expecting the ASX to open Monday’s session down 0.64% tracking Wall Street’s losses on Friday.
  • On the commodities front this morning, oil is trading 0.36% lower at US$85.36/barrel, gold is up 0.7% at US$2359/ounce and iron ore is up 1.28% at US$106.50/tonne.
  • AU$1.00 is buying US$0.64, 99.22 Japanese Yen, 52.29 British Pence and NZ$1.09.

Trading Ideas:

  • Bell Potter has increased the rating on Cettire (ASX:CTT) from a hold to a buy but have reduced the 12-month price target on the online fashion retailer from $4.50 to $4.00 per share following the release of a Q3 trading update including sales revenue of $168m which was 88% higher than the PCP and was a 14% beat on Bell Potter expectations, however, adjusted EBITDA margins of 3% were a miss to Bell Potter’s expectations.
  • And Trading Central has identified a bullish signal on Bega Cheese (ASX:BGA) following the formation of a pattern over a period of 33-days which is roughly the same amount of time the share price may rise from the close of $4.16 to the range of $4.65 to $4.75 according to standard principles of technical analysis.

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