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Aussie shares are slipping for the first time in three sessions, with the ASX 200 down by 0.2 per cent or 13pts to 6702.8. This is despite US stocks hitting fresh record highs overnight and improvements from major banks.

Last night the Dow Jones index surpassed 27,000 points for the first time on optimism that US interest rates are likely to head lower at the end of this month. Lower rates can help keep borrowing costs lower for businesses.

Healthcare stocks were impacted most last night on news the Trump Administration is dropping potential industry-changing reforms. The potential for other strategies in pushing drug prices lower seemed to weigh heavily on pharmaceutical companies like Merck and Pfizer.

Singapore’s economy shrank by 3.4 per cent over the past quarter. This compares to Bloomberg estimates of 0.5 per cent growth and has been driven by a slump in exports due to a slowing global economy.

Mining stocks are under pressure at lunch as expected following falls from global peers overnight together with softer oil, iron ore and gold prices. Next week BHP, Rio Tinto (RIO), South32 (S32), Woodside (WPL), Santos (STO) and Oil Search (OSH) will all release quarterly updates. A major broker raised OSH’s price target slightly yesterday.

According to the Financial Review, BHP is moving ahead with plans to exit its thermal coal business. No official statement has been released by the miner.

Noni B (NBL) is up 2.5 per cent after delivering a trading update this morning. The fashion retailer flagged underlying EBITDA of around $45m for the year. This is in line with guidance and up 21 per cent on the prior year.

The market is awaiting key trade data out of China today. June numbers on imports and exports are expected to be released. Next week will be the busiest of the month for Chinese data. On Monday, updates on GDP, retail sales, investment production and property prices are due. Considering China is Australia’s largest export market and the ongoing US-China dispute, these numbers will receive plenty of attention.

1.3bn shares have changed hands so far today worth $2.7bn. 502 stocks are up, 530 down and 334 are unchanged.

Published by CommSec