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Morning Bell 30 April

Grady Wulff
April 30, 2024

Wall Street opened the new trading week higher as investors prepare for a big week of corporate earnings results and the latest Federal Reserve meeting. The Dow Jones rose 0.38%, the S&P500 added 0.32% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq gained 0.35%. Tesla jumped more than 15% on Monday after overcoming a hurdle for its self-driving technology in China, while Domino’s Pizza gained more than 5% after reporting earnings that beat analysts’ expectations.

Across European overnight, markets closed mixed as investors assessed key earnings, company updates and inflation data out in the region. The STOXX600 rose 0.1%, Germany’s DAX fell 0.24%, the French CAC lost 0.29%, and, in the UK, the FTSE100 ended the day up 0.14%. The driver of Germany’s sell-off was the latest preliminary inflation reading coming in at an annual rate of 2.4% for April, which is a 0.6% rise from March and up 2.3% year-on-year. Dutch medical device giant Philips soared 29% on Monday after the company agreed to a $1.1bn settlement in a U.S. case regarding the recall of some of the company’s products that treat sleep apnoea.

Across Asia on Monday, markets closed mostly higher as the Japanese yen strengthened and ahead of key economic data out in the region today including China’s official purchasing managers index for April. Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.81% on Monday, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.54%, and China’s CSI 300 rose 1.11%.

The local market kicked off the new trading week in positive territory on the back of strong corporate earnings results that impressed investors in addition to taking strong lead from the US rally that ended last week on a high. The ASX200 closed Monday’s session up 0.81% with every sector ending the day in the green. Embattled casino operator Star Entertainment Group (ASX:SGR) rallied over 2% on Monday after the company announced Chairman David Foster has stepped down from his role, with the board appointing board member Anne Ward to replace Mr. Foster as the company looks to overcome recent challenges. Weak annual recurring revenue in Megaport’s (ASX:MP1) latest update led to investors selling out on Monday which sent the share price down over 5%, despite the IT company upgrading FY24 EBITDA guidance. Australia’s retail sales data is out today with the market expecting a 0.2% rise in March from February which would be a slight decline from the 0.3% reported in February and will provide another indicator that inflation is easing as consumer retail spend is a key driver of inflation. Investors also welcomed the announcement out of TPG Telecom (ASX:TPG) yesterday that the mobile services provider is partnering with Optus to expand into Australia’s regional market. TPG shares rose over 5% on Monday as investors see the deal will greatly reduce CAPEX for the telco provider and expand its revenue runway into regional Australia which has previously been dominated by Telstra. The ACCC is yet to approve the deal so all eyes will be on the ACCC to see if the deal goes ahead.

What to watch today:

  • Ahead of Tuesday’s trading session in Australia the SPI futures are expecting the ASX to open the day up 0.16% tracking global gains overnight.
  • On the commodities front this morning, oil is trading 1.2% lower at US$82.72/barrel, gold is down just 0.08% at US$2335.86/ounce and iron ore is up 0.44% at US$110.16 per tonne.
  • AU$1.00 has strengthened to buy US$0.66, 102.54 Japanese Yen, 52.36 British Pence and NZ$1.10.

Trading Ideas:

  • Bell Potter has maintained a buy rating on Coventry Group (ASXCYG) and raised the 12-month price target on the leading Australian industrial supply and services group after the company announced the acquisition of Steelmasters which is Australia and New Zealand’s third largest specialty fastener distributor, for an upfront cash consideration of NZ$45m. Coventry is funding the acquisition with a fully underwritten $25m two-tranche institutional placement and after receiving strong support from investors, upsized the raising to $30m.
  • Trading Central has identified a bullish signal on Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) following the formation of a pattern over a period of 53-days which is roughly the same amount of time the share price may rise from the close of $3.96 to $5.00 to $5.20 according to standard principles of technical analysis.

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