The Aussie market is looking to snap two days of losses with a generally broad pick up. The ASX 200 is climbing 44 points or 0.67% after dropping roughly 2% or 141 points over the past two sessions. The benchmark index is also on track for a weekly decline of roughly 1.1%.
Local shares are experiencing gains despite another soft lead from Wall Street. US markets fell for a third straight session as investors digest US-China trade updates. Improvements are across most sectors but financials remain in the red with further falls for the big banks. Westpac (WBC) is leading the slide with a loss of 1.1%. Since the news of alleged breaches of Anti-Monetary Laundering & Counter Terrorism Financing laws (AML/CTF) on Wednesday, WBC shares have slumped 6.5% and is trading at fresh nine month lows. The other majors are mostly softer but Commonwealth Bank (CBA) which is lifting 0.1% and National Bank (NAB) flat.
Resource stocks are on the rebound after suffering heavy losses over past sessions. Global oil prices continue to firm on news of major oil producing nations, OPEC and ally nations, are looking to extend production cuts into mid2020 ahead of a key meeting in early December. Most major oil & gas producers are lifting 1% or more. Beach Energy (BPT) is a standout, rising 2.2%.
Miners are also contributing to broader advances with the iron ore price now above US$86/tonne. Fortescue Metals (FMG) is 3% higher while BHP Group (BHP) and Rio Tinto (RIO) are 1% higher. Lithium miner, Pilbara Minerals (PLS) is among the most improved stocks on the ASX 200, with a 5% gain. Nickel miner Western Areas (WSA) is advancing 4% with both companies holding AGM’s yesterday.
One if the worst performers on the market has been Mayne Pharma (MYX), which is giving up 10%, after providing a downbeat update for the first four months of FY20 at its AGM. Revenue is down 16% on the prior year with greater competition among its generic products squeezing profit margins. Retailer, Kathmandu (KMD) is also weaker by 0.3% after an update its AGM.
The Aussie dollar remains below 68 US cents at 67.9 US with soft business activity numbers from the CBA/HIS Markit PMI surveys for November. So far, 1b units have been traded worth $2b with 536 stocks higher, 389 lower and 339 unchanged.
Published by CommSec