Australian Stocks Poised to Open Lower

Stock Markets

Australian shares are poised to open lower today as US stocks ended slightly lower on Friday, with the Dow Jones down 0.02%, and the S&P500 closing flat as a result of the effect of a drop in energy shares and growing concerns about the ongoing government shutdown being nullified by an optimistic earnings forecast by General Motors (+7.05%). ASX200 futures are currently down 8 points, further hinting that the market will open lower today.

The coming weeks will be quite interesting as investors await the start of the US reporting season to read up on the outlook for corporate profits.

Hard Currencies

The spot price of gold rose about 0.03% and is now hovering around US$1287.85, from US$1292.00 on Thursday. From a technical perspective, the strong uptrend in the spot price of gold remains intact and is expected to retest recent highs of US$1300.40.

Commodities

Brent crude prices have benefited from OPEC production cuts and steadying equities markets, and bounced $4.50 to finish the week at US$60.42 per barrel. The steep downtrend that has been in place since October’s high of US$86.70 seems to be broken.

Fiat Currencies

AUD (against the USD) has extended its rally in the wake of the flash crash on the 3rd of January which saw it drop to as low as 67.43¢ and is currently 72.11¢ (-0.06%), which is relatively low relative to historical levels. Weakness in the housing market and fears of an associated recession have been weighing on the AUD in recent months. 


This article was written by Mithun Fernando - Investment Analyst, Rivkin Securities Pty Ltd. Enquiries can be made via mithun.fernando@rivkin.com.au or by phoning +612 8302 3633. 

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