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Morning Bell 6 March

Grady Wulff
March 6, 2023

The ASX rose 0.4% in the final trading session of last week, buoyed by a rally for communications services and healthcare stocks, while the REIT sector was the only sector to close in the red on Friday. For the week though, the key index posted a 0.32% loss, its fourth straight weekly loss, as sharp losses for REIT and Financial stocks offset strong gains in the energy and materials sectors.

The winning stocks from Friday’s session were led by Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR) jumping over 13% following a broker note out of Bell Potter, where analyst Stuart Howe believes the lithium miner’s shares could have much further to run. Ramelius Resources (ASX:RMS) also rose 5.6% on Friday and Netwealth Group (ASX:NWL) rallied 4.95% to end the week. On the losing end, Capricorn Metals (ASX:CMM) fell 4%, Silver Lake Resources (ASX:SLR) lost 3.74% and Centuria Capital Group (ASX:CNI) fell 3.7%.

The most traded stocks by Bell Direct clients on Friday were Liontown Resources (ASX:LTR), Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG) and Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN).

Over in the US, stocks rallied on Friday following a retreat in the Treasury yields from recent highs, and comments from Atlanta’s Federal Reserve President backing a ‘slow and steady’ rate hike approach, boosted investor sentiment. The Dow Jones rose 1.17%, the S&P500 added 1.61% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq rose almost 2% on Friday. The yield on 10-year Treasury notes rose to 4.091% on Friday while the two-year US Treasury yield fell 0.4 basis points to 4.885%.

Over in Europe, markets closed higher in the region following a positive global trend on Friday. Germany’s DAX rose 1.64%, the French CAC added 0.88%, and in the UK the FTSE100 rose just 0.04%.

It’s a big week on the economic calendar this week as the RBA announces the latest rate hike decision for Australia on Tuesday, and later in the week we will gain an insight into how the US labour market is faring with nonfarm payrolls, unemployment and JOLTs jobs data all released in the US.

What to watch today:

  • Ahead of the local trading session here in Australia, the SPI futures are anticipating the ASX to open 0.87% higher to start the week on a positive note.
  • Stocks going ex-dividend today include QBE Insurance (ASX:QBE), Nick Scali (ASX:NCK), Sims (ASX:SGM), REA Group (ASX:REA), Iluke Resources (ASX:ILU), Helloworld Travel (ASX:HLO), Bendigo and Adelaide Bank (ASX:BEN), Insurance Australia Group (ASX:IAG) and more. If you’ve been thinking about these stocks it might be worth considering buying in today as stocks trading ex-dividend generally trade lower on the ex-dividend date.
  • Taking a look at commodities this morning, oil is trading almost 2% higher at US$79.68/barrel, gold is up 1.05% at US$1855.25/ounce and iron ore is flat at US$129/tonne.
  • The Aussie Dollar is buying US$0.67, 91.75 Japanese Yen, 56.24 British Pence and NZ$1.09.

Trading Ideas:

  • Bell Potter has increased its price target on Capricorn Metals (ASX:CMM) to $4.67 from $4.35 and has increased its rating to buy from hold on the company on the grounds of buying in at the dip ahead of catalysts. Bell Potter sees recent share price depreciation provides an opportunity to buy into the stock as the company’s management team has an excellent track record of delivering to plan, the gold miner is a sector leader, AISC are among the lowest in the sector, and the company has consistently strong cash generation per ounce produced.
  • Trading Central has identified a bullish signal on Champion Iron (ASX:CIA) following the formation of a pattern over a period of 274-days which is roughly the same amount of time the share price may rise from the close of $7.95 to the range of $11.20 to $12.00/share, according to standard principles of technical analysis.

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