ASX 200 on Thursday: Top five things to watch out for

Summary

  • The Australian equity benchmark ASX 200 is expected to open 15 points or 0.2% higher this morning.
  • The domestic market may rise even as the US Federal Reserve kept the interest rates unchanged but projected sooner than expected rate rise.
  • The Dow Jones fell 0.8%, the S&P 500 dropped 0.55%, and the NASDAQ dipped 0.25%.

The Australian equity benchmark ASX 200 is expected to continue its upward march on Thursday after the US Federal Reserve kept the interest rates unchanged but projected sooner than expected rate rise. The benchmark may open 15 points or 0.2% higher this morning, even as all three major Wall Street indices closed lower overnight.  The Dow Jones fell 0.8%, the S&P 500 dropped 0.55%, and the NASDAQ dipped 0.25%.

On Wednesday, the Australian shares breached the 7,400 level for the first time ever as heavyweight financials and energy stocks advanced.

Source: ©Ymgerman    | Megapixl.com

READ MORE: Top five renewable energy stocks on ASX

Top five things to watch out

Key data releases scheduled for Thursday:

Australian calendar - Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) governor Philip Lowe’s speech in Toowomba; RBA’s bulletin and Labour force May.

Global calendar - US leading index May; Eurozone’s inflation for May and construction output for April.

US Fed talks about sooner than expected rate hikes

The US Federal Reserve said that the interest rate hikes could happen sooner than expected, with stocks sliding and the dollar jumping on the news.

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell insisted at a press conference that the US economy is well positioned coming out of the coronavirus pandemic. The Fed said monetary support will remain until "substantial further progress" is seen on employment and inflation.

Crude oil trades mixed

Crude oil prices traded mixed overnight. The WTI crude oil price was down 0.4% to US$71.85 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price rose 0.1% to US$74.04 a barrel. The major energy stocks Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) and Santos (ASX:STO) could be in focus on Thursday.

READ MORE: Which are the top five ASX-listed technology dividend stocks?

Gold price dips

Gold prices traded in a tight range on Wednesday as chances that the Federal Reserve may hint at an early tapering of its bond-buying program set a cautious market tone.

Spot gold was little changed at US$1,859.62 per ounce, after declining on Monday to US$1,843.99, its lowest level since 17 May 2021. Major gold miners such as Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) and Newcrest Mining (ASX:NCM) could be under pressure on Thursday.

Source: ©Shimanovichs   | Megapixl.com

Coles shares to be in focus

The shares of Coles Group (ASX:COL) could be in focus as the company is scheduled to hold its virtual Strategy Day on Thursday. The retailer may also deliver a sales update.

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