The Australian share market had a volatile trading session ahead of the Reserve Bank’s first interest rate decision of the year at 2:30pm AEDT. Following the announcement of a 25 basis point rate hike, the S&P/ASX 200 index quickly shed around 50 points from its intraday high, closing at 7504.1 points, down 0.46 per cent. The RBA Governor said that ‘further increases in interest rates will be needed over the months ahead’.
In overseas markets, key indexes in the US remained weaker on Monday with the Dow Jones index dropping 35 points or 0.1 per cent, the S&P 500 down 0.6 per cent and the Nasdaq sliding 1 per cent. European share markets followed suit, with the European FTSEurofirst 300 index falling 0.7 per cent.
In Australia on Tuesday, two out of the twelve industry sectors posted gains. The energy sector managed to rise 0.48 per cent, and utilities increased 0.14 per cent. Property trusts was the worst performing sector, dropping by 1.62 per cent.
Macquarie Group (MQG) closed up 0.72 per cent at $190.33 after releasing its quarterly results. Macquarie reported varied conditions across its diverse businesses, leading to profits that were ‘slightly up’ on the previous period.
Toll road operator Transurban (TCL) released its first half earnings, declaring a 42.6 per cent increase in toll revenue as workers returned to offices. Transurban also announced the CEO Scott Charlton will leave the company at the end of 2023, after 11 years in the role. It declared an interim dividend of 26.5 cents per share, and upgraded distribution guidance for financial year 2023 to 57 cents. Shares in TCL closed down 0.57 per cent.
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Car accessories company ARB Corporation (ARB) dropped 12.39 per cent to $29.19 one day after releasing a market update on earnings for the half year ending December 2022. Sales revenue was down 5.1 per cent on year and profit before tax declined 29.7 per cent.
Shares in Nuix (NXL), the analytical software company rose 43.7 per cent after announcing that proceedings against the company by the former CEO Edward Sheehy, were dismissed by the Federal Court. Sheehy’s claim was in relation to not receiving company options he was entitled to.
On Tuesday, 3.5 billion shares were traded, worth $6.9 billion. Overall 542 stocks rose over the session, while 805 fell and 442 finished unchanged.
Looking ahead, US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is scheduled to deliver a speech tonight. The speech will take place at 1am Wednesday morning Sydney time. US weekly mortgage applications will also be released.
Originally published by Steven Daghlian – Market Analyst (Author), CommSec