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Global Market Report - 22 January

Glenn Freeman  |  22 Jan 2020Text size  Decrease  Increase  |  
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Australia

Australian shares look set to open higher after a pullback in US markets overnight.
The SPI200 futures contract was up 6 points, or 0.09 per cent, at 7,014 at 7am Sydney time on Wednesday.

On Wall Street, shares fell in afternoon trading. The Dow was 0.6 per cent lower. Both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq were lower after trading flat earlier.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX200 index finished Monday up 15.4 points, or 0.22 per cent, at 7,079.5 points after reaching a new high of 7092.5 in morning trade.

The broader All Ordinaries gained 16 points, or 0.22 per cent, to 7,196.3 on Monday.
The local resources sector declined slightly after an update from BHP saw shares in the mining giant fall 0.1 per cent to $41.20.

But iron ore miner Fortescue Metals Group closed 2.1 per cent higher at $12.08 yesterday, continuing the rally that has seen its share price jump 10 per cent in five days.

Australian technology stocks dragged the local market down, as shares in WiseTech Global, Xero and TechnologyOne dropped 4 per cent, 1.5 per cent and 4.7 per cent respectively.

The Aussie dollar is buying 68.44 US cents at 8am, from 68.26 US cents on Tuesday.

Asia

Markets across Asia have fallen as virus fears spread, China shares hitting two-week lows on Tuesday ahead of a week-long market hiatus for Chinese New Year holidays.

The blue-chip CSI300 index lost 1.7 per cent, and the Shanghai Composite Index was down 1.4 per cent – trimming gains driven by the interim US-China trade deal signed last week.

Shares of airlines, casinos and cinema operators fell, but drugmakers gained – the CSI300 healthcare index rose 0.6 per cent.

Hong Kong shares also declined as investors reacted to virus outbreak fears. The Hang Seng fell 2.8 per cent.

In Japan, the Nikkei share average declined 0.82 per cent to 23,886.99 and the broader Topix lost 0.56 per cent to 1,734.46.

Cosmetic maker Shiseido was the worst performer, down 2.5 per cent. But concerns over the virus saw a jump of 16.2 per cent in the shares of protective attire supplier Azearth. Airtech Japan, which makes air purifying products, gained 10.6 per cent.

Europe

European shares followed the same downward trend amid concerns over the new coronavirus outbreak that originated in China's Wuhan province.

The pan-European STOXX 600 was down 0.1 per cent, having fallen 1 per cent earlier in the day before positive German business sentiment data eased some of the losses.

The shares of long-haul flight operators Air France, Lufthansa and British Airways-owner IAG retreated, as news of the contagion raised concerns over disruptions to travel during the coming Chinese holiday.

Bank stocks dipped 1 per cent as Switzerland's largest bank UBS Group cut its profitability targets.

China-exposed luxury goods makers LVMH, Kering, Hermes and Burberry also fell.
Resources companies were the worst performers.

North America

US stock indexes slipped on Tuesday amid worries about the fallout from the deadly virus outbreak and a gloomy growth outlook from the IMF paused a record-setting rally on Wall Street.

The developments soured the mood for US investors returning from a long holiday weekend.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.15 per cent at 29,302.69. The S&P 500 fell 0.23 per cent to 3,322.12 and the Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.09 per cent to 9,380.87.

Travel stocks including Delta Air Lines Inc, United Airlines Holdings Inc and American Airlines Group Inc fell between 1.5 per cent and 2.6 per cent.

Hotel and casino operators Las Vegas Sands Corp and Wynn Resorts Ltd, both of which have large operations in China, dropped about 5 per cent. Booking.com owner Booking Holdings and Tripadvisor both fell more than two per cent.

Another cause for concern was the International Monetary Fund trimming its global growth forecasts for 2020 and 2021.

Halliburton Co rose 2.2 per cent after the oilfield service provider beat Wall Street estimates for quarterly adjusted earnings.

is senior editor for Morningstar Australia

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