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All sectors were down yesterday as commodity prices weakened. Long term interest rates also continued to push higher. Weighing down on the market yesterday was NAB’s business confidence survey, which increased to a 5- month high, while business conditions saw the largest jump since June 2020. The rise in conditions were driven by a large increase in retail, finance, business and property. And labour costs hit a record high, further dampening sentiment. Meanwhile the 10-year government bond reached its highest level since 2015.
The top performer was Regis Resources (ASX:RRL), boosted by the rise in the gold price, as well as a bullish broker note from Credit Suisse. Other gold miners also advanced, including St Barbara (ASX:SBM), Ramelius Resources (ASX:RMS), and Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN). Meanwhile, the healthcare sector declined 1.4% yesterday. Biotech company Imugene (ASX:IMU) was down the most. Bell Potter have a Speculative Buy rating on IMU.
Overnight, the latest US inflation reading came in at its highest level since 1981. Consumer prices in March surged 8.5% from a year ago, higher than expected, and core CPI climbed 0.3% in March. The high inflation numbers raised expectations of tighter monetary policy from the Fed, which investors fear could slow the economy. The major benchmarks closed in the red. The Dow, S&P500 and Nasdaq down all down 0.3%.
What to watch today: