6 things Australian traders will be talking about this morning

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As investors digested inflation data and news of geopolitical turmoil, stocks ended up down after swaying back and forth Wednesday.

Here’s the scoreboard:

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 24,189.73 -218.27 (-0.89%)

S&P 500: 2,645.65 -11.22 (-0.42%)

AUD/USD: 0.7756 -0.0007 (-0.09%)

ASX 200 SPI futures (June contracts): 5,781.0 (-10)

  1. Oil prices soared after President Donald Trump vowed to strike Syria with missiles in an early morning tweet. West Texas Intermediate Oil hit a three-year high, up 1.74% to $US66.68 per barrel.
  2. The US dollar traded in a narrow range overnight as inflation data matched expectations. But the Russian ruble continued to sink after President Donald Trump taunted Moscow on Twitter. The currency is on track for its worst week since 1999.
  3. Escalating tensions in the middle-east gave rise to more risk-off sentiment, as gold settled 1% higher at $US1,350 an ounce after briefly pushing as high as $US1,365. The greenback lost ground against the safe-haven yen, while US 10-year bond yields fell slightly to 2.78%.
  4. The minutes from the US Fed’s policy meeting showed that the bank remains on track for at least two more rate hikes this year. Committee members expressed confidence that inflation will hit their 2% target, while also highlighting concerns over a potential trade war with China.
  5. Shares in Facebook rose again after another day of Mark Zuckerberg testifying before US lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
  6. With stock market volatility on the rise, technical analysts at UBS have highlighted 2,580 as the key support level for the S&P500. The analysts said that a break below 2,580 would “most likely trigger a wave of selling“.

Here’s today’s economic calendar:

  • Australian housing finance data for February
  • Bank of England Governor Mark Carney will give a speech.
  • The European Central Bank will release minutes from its last meeting.
  • US weekly jobless claims are out.

Have a great day.

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