The Aussie market snapped three straight days of gains after the ASX 200 shed 45 pts or 0.68 per cent, to 6605.6. This comes after a slump in key commodities overnight led to declines across the materials sector. While most sectors declined on Friday, Consumer Staples, Health Care, Utilities and Property Trusts improved. The Health Care sector has now improved for 11 straight sessions.

Over the week, the ASX 200 shed 1.1 per cent. Losses were driven by the Materials sector, after it recorded its first six-week-losingstreak since April 2013. Following a 6.1 per cent loss this week, the Materials sector is now down ~21.5 per cent since around the start of June. The Consumer Staples sector climbed 1.2 per cent, its fourth straight weekly win.

China’s economy expanded by 0.4 per cent in the June quarter (consensus: +1.2 per cent) from a year earlier, slowing from the March quarter’s 4.8 per cent pace. The growth rate was the weakest since the steep 6.9 per cent slump in the March quarter of 2020 at the initial stages of the Covid-19 pandemic. On a quarterly basis, GDP contracted by 2.6 per cent in the June quarter (consensus: -2.0 per cent).

In company news, Rio Tinto (RIO) finished 2.9 per cent lower but outperformed its peers after its iron ore shipments and production both lifted over the quarter, despite heavy rainfall. RIO has kept its 2022 iron ore guidance unchanged at 320-335Mt, but has reduced its guidance on alumina, aluminium and diamond production.

WiseTech Global (WTC) was amongst the best performers today after it upgraded its FY22 earnings guidance. WTC said that ‘topline growth and cost efficiencies’ supported a ~10.5 per cent lift in the logistics software company’s EBITDA guidance. Shares of WTC finished 3.4 per cent higher.

Fund manager Pendal Group (PDL) shed 7.8 per cent and was the worst performer today, after it announced an 11.1 per cent decline in its funds-under-management in June. PDL says that recent market volatility and prospects of aggressive interest rate hikes impacted its performance. PDL will receive FY22 performance fees of $5.4 million.

2.4bn shares were traded, worth $6.6bn. 590 stocks rose, 691 fell & 409 finished unchanged.

In the US, retail sales, industrial production, manufacturing, consumer confidence and import/export prices data are all scheduled. Wells Fargo and Citigroup are set to post quarterly earnings.

Originally published by Divik Nigam – (Author), CommSec