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What Mattered Today

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The ASX was on the front foot early today before paring gains as the session wore on in the post-budget trade. UBS thinks the budget is ultimately good for stocks given its pro-growth even though that could mean interest rates remain higher for longer. The ASX200 finished up 26pts, though this was ~30pts from the intraday high, still only 2% from the all-time high.

  • The ASX 200 finished up 26pts/+0.35% at 7753.
  • Materials (+1.19%) was best on ground, carried by BHP. Healthcare (+0.8%) and Consumer Discretionary (+0.76%) were also well supported
  • Industrials (-0.63%), Energy (-0.54%) and Financials (-0.25%) were the only sectors to close lower.
  • Australia’s Wage Price Index grew at a slower than expected pace in the first quarter which is good for inflation, up 0.8%, growth slowing from the 0.9% printed in the December quarter and below expectations for 0.9%.
  • On an annual basis, wages growth slowed to 4.1% down from 4.2% last quarter.
  • US CPI in focus tonight, the market expecting Core inflation of +0.3% for the month, and headline 3.4% for the year.
  • IRESS (IRE) -1.78% struggled after confirming some details around the security breach flagged last week. Stolen credentials were used to access their OneVue platform. Ironically, the collateral damage was worse for Praemium (PPS) -2.22% which bought the business from IRESS for $21m.
  • Australian Agricultural Company (AAC) -1.42% posted an operating profit of $50.5m on the back of strong volumes across their meat business, however, weaker cattle prices forced a $150m valuation adjustment on the company’s herd.
  • Silex (SLX) +2.08% we had a chance to chat to the company today regarding their latest Investor presentation. No new news, the stock carried higher by yesterday’s US ban on Russian uranium.
  • IDP Education (IEL) +7.05% bounced today, the short position had climbed over 15% ahead of the federal Budget with many predicting a more aggressive stance on international students than what was delivered. Shorts covered.
  • CSR unch announced FY24 results with a strong Building materials figure (EBIT $294m, +8%) offset by weak Aluminium (EBIT loss of $29m) as high electricity prices shredded earnings. The company is under takeover from Saint-Gobain at $9/sh.
  • Iron Ore was softened in Asia, BHP added +2.09% after Anglo American (AAL LN) rejected their latest takeover offer.
  • Asian stocks were mixed with Nikkei +0.1%, China -0.6% and Hong Kong closed.
  • US Futures are more or less unchanged at our close.
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ASX 200 Index
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