Market Update & Important Indicators
U.S. stocks pulled back Thursday, a day after the U.S. Federal Reserve released minutes from its March policy meeting that showed officials were unlikely to raise interest rates in April. Stock markets have struggled for direction this month following a sharp rally that began in mid-February, spurred by easing concerns over the health of the global economy and support from central banks.
European stock markets slid in Thursday's trade, with initial optimism over rising oil prices overshadowed by concerns about global growth. The Stoxx Europe 600 index closed down 0.8% at 328.10, erasing an earlier gain. Richard Perry, analyst at Hantec Markets, said European markets initially got a boost from a dovish set of Federal Reserve minutes out late Wednesday, but the focus eventually changed to concerns over the world economy.
Stocks in China slipped Thursday, amid worries about the imminent expiration of temporary restrictions on large shareholders from selling domestic stocks. The Shanghai Composite Index was down 0.8% at 3027.47, compared with a 0.3% decline in the Nikkei Stock Average and a 0.2% loss in South Korea's Kospi. Shares in the region have been directionless in recent sessions, as they have been elsewhere in the world, after a strong run since mid-February.
Australian energy stocks again tracked rebounding oil prices, helping lift the wider market for a second day running. In a similar performance as the day before, the S&P/ASX 200 rose 18.2 points, or 0.4%, to finish at 4964.1. Still, the index remains down 0.7% for the week so far after a weak start to April.
Copper prices closed lower in Europe over demand concerns related to China. The London Metal Exchange's three-month copper contract was down 2.87% at $4,650.50 a metric ton at the PM kerb close, having hit a more than five-week low earlier in the session at $4,641 a ton. Elsewhere, aluminum closed down 0.7% at $1,484 a ton, zinc was down 3.1% at $1,741 a ton, nickel was down 2.33% at $8,351 a ton, lead was down 0.52% at $1,696 a ton and tin was up 1.0% at $16,690 a ton.
Recent Contacts & Presentations
Evolution Mining (EVN), St Barbara (SBM), Troy Resources (TRY), Explaurum (EXU), Sino Gas & Energy (SEH), Western Areas (WSA), Finders Resources (FND), Carnarvon Petroleum (CVN), Threat Protect Australia (TPS), Austal (ASB), Paragon Care (PGC), Salt Lake Potash (SO4), Peet (PPC), Department 13 (D13), Actinogen Medical (ACW)