The Material sector’s failure to maintain early gains contributed to the ASX 200’s 37.5 pts or 0.56 per cent decline this afternoon. On Tuesday, nine sectors and 118 stocks finished lower, with Tech (down 2.85 per cent) falling most. Despite climbing by as much as 1.6 per cent in early trade, the Materials sector closed 0.87 per cent lower. The Energy sector was a standout thanks to a 5.1 per cent lift in oil prices.

In economic news, the Reserve Bank (RBA) released minutes from its June Monetary Policy meeting, which is when it hiked the official cash rate by 50 basis points (bp) – its second straight 50bp rate hike. The minutes showed that the RBA Board considered lifting rates by either 25 or 50bp at the July 5 meeting but members agreed that there was a stronger case for lifting rates by 50bp. Two key considerations were that the level of interest rates was still “very low”, together with the need to restrain medium-term inflationary expectations.

Australian consumer confidence, as measured by the ANZ-Roy Morgan survey, has recorded its first improvement in three weeks, adding 0.2 per cent last week. Of importance was a 0.2 percentage point decline in ‘weekly inflation expectations’ to 5.8 per cent.

In company news, BHP Group (BHP) was up by as much as 2.6 per cent in early trade, but finished 1 per cent lower. In its quarterly update, BHP highlighted that annual iron ore, copper & metallurgical coal production was within its full-year (FY22) production guidance, and increased over the quarter by 8 per cent, 25 per cent and 3 per cent, respectively.

JB Hi-Fi (JBH) climbed 2.15 per cent after it posted its unaudited results for FY22. The electronics retailer says that its revenue grew by 3.5 per cent over the year to $9,232 million. Operating income (EBIT) and profit grew annually by 6.9 per cent and 7.7 per cent, respectively. JBH attributes its improved earnings to ‘heightened customer demand and strong sales growth’ in the last quarter.

HUB24 (HUB) fell 4.97 per cent and was the worst performer today despite posting a 31.7 per cent increase in its annual net inflows. Whilst its total funds-under-administration (FUA) jumped annually by 11.8 per cent, HUB’s Portfolio, Administration & Reporting Services FUA fell 7.7 per cent. Over FY22, the portfolio services provider’s platform net inflows have also fallen by 37.2 per cent.

For the week ahead, overseas, the focus will be on the US earnings season which heats up along with updates on global manufacturing activity and inflation.

2.5bn shares were traded, worth $6.7bn. 648 stocks rose, 657 fell & 394 finished unchanged.

In the US, housing starts and building permits data is issued. On the earnings front, Johnson & Johnson, Haliburton, Novartis and Netflix are set to post results.

Originally published by Divik Nigam – (Author, CommSec