The ASX200 traded lower at the market open. The bottom performing stocks in this index are Nearmap Ltd and Appen Limited. The IT sector seems to be pulling down the market strings. HUB24, Zip Ltd and Afterpay are trading in red zone. While the materials and energy sectors are providing support to the market. On Thursday, the ASX 200 closed the session down by 0.48% or 34.1 points to 7,061.7.
The Australian shares closed lower due to a heavy sell off in the tech shares and the country’s escalating tension with China. Commodity super cycle can define the market charter today. Iron ore hits new record high amid increased demand of steel making ingredient by the profitable Chinese steel mills. Besides, AU-China tension is also fuelling the iron ore rally amid supply constraints from Australia- the largest source of iron ore for China.
Aluminum prices approached levels last seen in 2018 and copper prices flirted with a 10-year peak. Australian mining companies such as Rio Tinto, BHP Group Limited, Fortescue Metals Group Limited, along with the gold miners such as Newcrest Mining Liming and De Grey Mining Limited could outperform the market. Oil prices gave up initial gains despite crude stockpiles in the US, the world's largest oil consumer, falling more sharply than expected.
Oil prices are under pressure from rising COVID-19 infections in India. Brent crude Futures settled 87 cents lower, at US$68.09 a barrel, while the WTI crude Futures fell 92 cents to US$64.71 a barrel. Energy companies such as Santos Limited, Elixir Energy Limited and Oil Search Limited could remain under the scanner today.