(RTTNews) – The Australian stock market is marginally lower in chopping trading on Monday, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 hovering below the 7,100 level, as gains in financial and materials stocks is offset by gold miners and energy stocks. However, the cues from Wall Street on Friday were broadly positive.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is losing 8.60 points or 0.12 percent to 7,052.10, after touching a high of 7,075.20 and low of 7,048.40 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is down 8.40 points or 0.12 percent to 7,312.30. Australian stocks closed marginally higher or flat on Friday.
Among the major miners, BHP Group and Mineral Resources are edging up 0.5 percent each, while Rio Tinto is gaining almost 1 percent and Fortescue Metals is up more than 1 percent.
Oil stocks are lower, with oil Search and Santos flat, while Woodside Petroleum is edging down 0.2 percent. The big four banks are higher. National Australia Bank is gaining more than 1 percent and Westpac is adding almost 1 percent, while ANZ Banking and Commonwealth Bank are edging up 0.3 percent each. Westpac reported that its first-half profit will take a $282 million hit from provisions for refunds and litigation, write-downs and various other ‘notable items.’ The lender also added that It had made a $288 million gain on the revaluation of its minority stake in crypto-currency exchange Coinbase.
Among tech stocks, Afterpay is gaining almost 1 percent, while WiseTech Global is edging down 0.3 percent and Appen is losing almost 1 percent.
Gold miners are lower after gold prices softened on Friday. Newcrest Mining and Evolution Mining are losing more than 2 percent, while Star Resources is down almost 2 percent.
Shares in nib Holdings are soaring more than 12 percent after the health insurer reinstated profit guidance for the first time since pandemic lockdowns began. The company predicted a full year profit of between $200 million and $225 million. In the currency market, the Aussie dollar is trading at $0.776 on Monday.
On Wall Street, stocks showed a strong move back to the upside during trading on Friday after coming under pressure over the course of the previous session. The major averages all moved to the upside on the day, although the Dow underperformed its counterparts.
The major averages pulled back off their highs going into the close but remained firmly positive. The Dow climbed 227.59 points or 0.7 percent to 34,043.49, while the Nasdaq surged up 198.40 points or 1.4 percent to 14,016.81 and the S&P 500 jumped 45.19 points or 1.1 percent to 4,180.17.
Meanwhile, European stocks climbed off their worst levels of the day but still closed mostly lower. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index closed nearly unchanged, the French CAC 40 Index dipped by 0.2 percent and the German DAX Index fell by 0.3 percent.
Crude oil prices moved higher on Friday, lifted by buoyant demand for energy in the U.S. despite a weak global outlook. West Texas Intermediate Crude futures for June ended up by $0.71 or 1.2 percent at $62.14 a barrel. WTI crude futures shed 1.7 percent in the week.