• In US economic data, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association, mortgage applications fell by 6.5% in the past week (prior week: -2.3%). Wholesale inventories rose by 2.2% in April (survey: +2.1%)
• European sharemarkets fell on Wednesday. Credit Suisse said it would likely see a group-wide loss in the second quarter. Shares in Credit Suisse fell as much as 7% but recovered to end higher by 3.8%. But the profit warning weighed on the banks sector which fell by 0.9%. Shares in UBS fell by 2.6%. But retailers rose by 2.1%. The pan-European STOXX 600 index lost 0.6%. The German Dax index fell by 0.8% and the UK FTSE index eased by 0.1%. In London trade, shares of Rio Tinto fell by 0.4% and BHP shares were down by 0.2%.
• US sharemarkets fell on Wednesday, giving back most of the previous day’s gains. Higher bond yields especially weighed on technology stocks. Shares in chipmaker Intel fell by 5.3% in response to a negative broker report. The PhiladelphiaSemiconductor SE index was down 2.4%. The Dow Jones index closed lower by 269 points or 0.8%. And the S&P 500 index lost 1.1% with the Nasdaq index down by 89 points or 0.7%.
• US longer-term treasuries fell on Wednesday (yields higher). The US Treasury sold US$33 billion of 10-year notes at a yield of 3.03% into “tepid” demand. The notes saw 2.41 times the amount of bids to debt on offer, the lowest since November. US 10-year yields rose by around 5 points to near 3.02%. And US 2-year yields rose by 4 points to near 2.78%.
• Major currencies were mixed against the US dollar in European and US trade. The Euro rose from lows near US$1.0670 to highs near US$1.0745 and was near US$1.0715 at the US close. The Aussie dollar rose from lows near US71.75 cents to highs near US72.25 cents and was near US71.95 cents at the US close. But the Japanese yen eased from 133 yen per US dollar to JPY134.45 and was near JPY134.20 at the US close.
• Global oil prices rose by around 2.5% on Wednesday. Reuters reported “US commercial crude oil inventories rose unexpectedly last week, while crude in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve fell by a record amount as refiners’ inputs rose to their highest since January 2020.” The Brent crude price rose by US$3.01 or 2.5% to US$123.58 a barrel. And the US Nymex crude price rose by US$2.70 or 2.3% to US$122.11 a barrel.
• Base metal prices rose by between 0.4-2.7% on Wednesday with tin up the most. But nickel was the exception, down 2.1%.
• The gold futures price rose by US$4.40 or 0.2% to US$1,856.50 an ounce. Spot gold was trading near US$1,853 an ounce at the US close. The iron ore futures price rose by US7 cents or less than 0.1% to US$145.88 a tonne. Ahead: In Australia, weekly payroll jobs and wages data is released. In the US, data on initial claims for unemployment insurance (jobless claims) are released.
Originally Published by CommSec