Soft Start To June

By Glenn Dyer | More Articles by Glenn Dyer

A wary start to June for global markets as investors ignored the mostly positive performance in May.

Wall Street reversed earlier losses to close slightly higher, gold was easier, oil was mixed, with after hours losses, European and Asian shares were lower, surveys of global manufacturing were also mixed to disappointing and other commodity prices weakened.

Our market will start with a small gain – perhaps 2 points on the ASX 200 after overnight futures trading.

That was after yesterday’s surprisingly large 1% fall in the ASX 200. The index ended down 55 points at 5323, with mining and energy shares lower.

The Aussie dollar was trading around 72.55 US cents this morning, down from nearly 73 US cents in the wake of yesterday’s better than expected March quarter GDP growth figures.

The local market will see confirmation of the $1.65 a share offer for Patties Foods (PFL) by a private equity group, and could also see more details of the private equity approach to ALS. The approach is reported to have come from a partnership of Bain and Advent, according to media reports this morning.

Iron ore prices dipped under $US50 a tonne in China yesterday. Spot iron ore for fell 3.49% to $US48.40 a tonne, the lowest level since February. The price is just over $US20 a tonne lower than the most recent peak of just over $US70 in late April.

Comex June gold futures lost $US2.90, or 0.2%, to settle at $1,211.90 an ounce, the lowest since February 22. That was after May’s 5.9% loss.

Comex July silver lost 6.7, or 0.4%, lower at $15.927 an ounce, after a May loss of 10.2% and Comex July copper ended at $US2.073 a pound, down 2.3 cents, or 1.1%, building on May’s loss of around 8%.

US July West Texas Intermediate crude futures settled at $US49.01 a barrel, down 9 cents, or 0.2% In New York. It ended up from the session’s low of $US47.75. August Brent crude in London dropped 17 cents, or 0.3%, to $US49.72 a barrel.

US futures dipped back under $US49 a barrel in early Asian trading.

Traders are watching the OPEC meeting in Vienna tonight for any sign of a production cap. A report in the Wall Street Journal claiming there would be discussion of such a restriction sparked a brief rally in oil before it died out.

On Wall Street, the S&P 500 index edged up 2.37 points, or 0.1%, to close at 2,099.33, the Dow recovered from a more than 120-point drop during trading to end 2.47 points higher, or less than 0.1%, at 17,789.67.

And the Nasdaq Composite rose 4.20 points, or 0.1%, to close at 4,952.25.

Glenn Dyer

About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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