Market Update & Important Indicators:
U.S. stocks suffered their worst week in more than two years, signalling mounting investor anxiety over whether factors from restrictive trade policies to rising interest rates could disrupt the nine-year bull market. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 1,400 points over five days, a 5.7% decline that marked the blue-chip index's biggest weekly percentage loss since January 2016. Financial stocks in the S&P 500 dropped 3% Friday, with Bank of America and Morgan Stanley falling nearly 5% apiece. Tech stocks slid nearly as much, with Facebook posting its third-worst weekly fall on record. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 425 points, or 1.8%, to 23,533 on Friday, deepening its declines for the year and closing at its lowest level since November. The S&P 500 fell 55 points, or 2.1%, to 2,588 and the Nasdaq Composite shed 174 points, or 2.4%, to 6993. Stocks elsewhere around the world fell broadly, with benchmark indexes in Europe, Japan, Shanghai and Hong Kong each losing more than 3% for the week. The U.S. gold price had another strong night, finishing 1.4% higher at 1,346.80 US$/oz.
European shares were broadly a sea of red as China hit back at Washington's imposition of $60 billion in trade tariffs with a more modest $3 billion tariff package. The Stoxx Europe 600 fell 1.1%, or 3.9 points, to 365.25 while all other major European indices apart from the Norway Oslo All-Share declined. Germany's DAX was down 1.85% and France's CAC-40 was off 1.5%. Next was the biggest pan-European riser, up 6.8% after full-year results weren't as bad as some might have expected.
The global equities swoon deepened Friday in Asia, as market participants dumped stocks amid escalating trade tensions. The U.S. president suspended tariffs for Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, the European Union nations and South Korea, which effectively means tariffs will apply to three major steel exporters; China, Russia, and Japan. Japan's Nikkei Stock Average closed down 4.5% Friday as the yen's sharp gains hit the export-heavy index. Stocks in China also fell with the Shanghai Composite Index down 3.4%, and the Shenzhen Composite Index down 4.3%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index skidded 2.8% as index heavyweight Tencent added to Thursday's 5% post-earnings drop with a 4.3% decline. The drop for the Chinese internet giant, Asia's biggest company by market value, came as major shareholder Naspers, a South African media and internet firm, said it would sell a small portion of its one-third stake in the company.
Australian stocks logged their biggest slide since early February amid the trade-related global equities selloff. The S&P/ASX 200 declined 2% to 5820.7, matching 2018's closing low. BlueScope Steel lost 5.9% while big miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto fell more than 3% as Chinese metal futures logged early 5% declines. The materials sector shed 2.7%, its worst day since April. Meanwhile, financials dropped 2.2% in hitting a 15-month low.
The London Metal Exchange’s 3-month copper contract traded lower overnight, falling 0.5% at 6,660/t. most of the other base metals also finished lower on Friday night. Aluminium prices fell 1.3% at 2,027/t, whilst tin prices dropped 0.3% to 20,845/t. Lead prices fell 1.0% to 2,360/t, whilst nickel prices were again the biggest base metal loser overnight, shedding 1.9% at 12,902/t. Zinc prices were the only base metal to buck the trend, rising 0.4% at 3,215/t.
Recent Contacts & Presentations:
Pacific Energy Ltd (PEA), Carnarvon Petroleum Ltd (CVN), Australian Mines Ltd (AUZ), Australian Finance Group (AFG), Paladin Energy Ltd (PDN), Cooper Energy Ltd (COE), Medibio Ltd (MEB), Botanix Pharmaceuticals Ltd (BOT), Salt Lake Potash Ltd (SO4), Golden Mile Resources Ltd (G88), NTM Gold Ltd (NTM), Ausmex Mining Group Ltd (AMG), Matrix C&E Ltd (MCE), Austal Ltd (ASB), Decmil Group Ltd (DCG), Ventnor Resources Ltd, Ausdrill Ltd (ASL), Alice Queen Ltd (AQX), PNX Metals Ltd (PNX), Alliance Resources Ltd (AGS), Myanmar Metals Ltd (MYL), Primary Gold Ltd (PGO), Sino Gas & Energy Holdings Ltd (SEH), Australis Oil & Gas Ltd (ATS), Explaurum Ltd (EXU)