The local market lifted for a second straight day, and despite climbing by as much as 0.8 per cent in early trade, the ASX 200 erased some of its gains and finished up 0.28 per cent or 19.2 points to 6798.6. Nine sectors and around 67 per cent of stocks in the ASX 200 gained ground. The Mining sector fell by 1.2 per cent, and was dragged lower by major miners BHP Group (BHP), Fortescue Metals (FMG) and Rio Tinto (RIO). Coal miners New Hope Corporation (NHC) and Whitehaven Coal (WHC) also lost ground, falling by 6.2 per cent and 4.5 per cent, respectively. The Energy sector fell 1.6 per cent and snapped three straight days of gains, weighed by a 12.6 per cent fall in Ampol (ALD).

Tomorrow, local inflation data is expected to be released. A survey conducted by Bloomberg across 26 economists shows that the consensus for the annual rate of inflation lies at 7 per cent, while the quarterly inflation rate forecast sits at 1.6 per cent. Any deviation from these estimates could elevate market volatility.

In company news, Ampol (ALD) fell 12.6 per cent, its worst day since March 2020, on the back of a trading update it released earlier this morning. The petroleum company says that while it’s on track to deliver record full year earnings, it expects market volatility to ‘continue in the period ahead’, which may cause its retail margins to fluctuate.

Credit Corp Group (CCP) was amongst the best performers today, after it rose by 7.9 per cent. The debt-purchasing company reaffirmed its profit, earnings-per-share and net lending guidance, also improved its ledger investment guidance by 4.2 per cent.

Reliance Worldwide Corporation (RWC) shares slumped 13.4 per cent and hit fresh 52-week lows on a trading update it released today. The plumbing company reported a 23 per cent annual increase in its sales, but its EBITDA margins fell, largely driven by ‘higher costs’ and ‘lower volumes’. It also flagged that its ‘immediate outlook is uncertain’ given the weak ‘global economic conditions’, which increase the chances of a ‘downturn in RWC’s key markets’.


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Later tonight, the Federal Budget is scheduled to be released at 7:30pm by treasurer Jim Chalmers. This is the first budget release under the newly elected Labour Government. Infrastructure and childcare assistance are expected to feature, and the underlying cash budget deficit, expected to be around A$36.9 billion, is reducing markedly on the back of higher commodity prices and taxes.

The US earnings season continues tonight with Google and Microsoft expected to release earnings updates. US futures are currently flat.

Today, 3.2bn shares were traded, worth $6.3bn. 649 stocks rose, 709 fell & 407 finished unchanged.

Originally published by Divik Nigam – (Author), CommSec