Aust shares dip amid European, US election uncertainty - triSearch

Aust shares dip amid European, US election uncertainty

By Derek Rose, AAP

The local market has slipped amid uncertainty about elections in Europe and the United States, although a fire at a major Queensland coalmine led to strong gains for rival coalminers.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index on Monday finished at the highs of the day, down 16.8 points, or 0.22 per cent, to 7,7507, while the broader All Ordinaries was down 21.5 points, or 0.27 per cent, to 7,992.3.

In France, the far-right National Rally party won a crushing victory in the first of two rounds for the country’s parliamentary elections, in a huge blow to President Emmanuel Macron.

Voters in the United Kingdom head to the polls on Thursday with opinion polls predicting a landslide defeat for the Tories and Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.

In the United States, President Joe Biden was dismissing calls for him to step aside after a disastrous debate performance against Donald Trump that left Democrats panicking.

Seven of the ASX’s 11 sectors finished lower, with energy, mining, utilities and property higher.

Tech was the biggest loser, dropping 2.2 per cent, as Wisetech Global fell 5.2 per cent to a one-week low of $95.10.

Coalminers posted strong gains after an underground fire broke out at Anglo American’s troubled Grosvenor metallurgical coal mine in Queensland over the weekend. Production is set to be disrupted for months as the fire burns, and there was some talk that the major mine might never reopen.

Whitehaven Coal rose 6.3 per cent to a one-month high of $8.13, Yancoal added 4.5 per cent to $6.92, Coronado Global Resources climbed 8.9 per cent to a three-month high of $1.29 and Stanmore Resources finished 5.1 per cent higher at a nearly five-month high of $3.72.

Elsewhere in the heavyweight mining sector, the iron ore giants gained while goldminers slipped as the precious metal changed hands at $US2,326 an ounce.

Fortescue rose 1.6 per cent to $21.76, BHP added 1.5 per cent to $43.30 and Rio Tinto climbed 1.4 per cent to $120.67, while Newmont dropped 1.5 per cent to $62.50, Evolution fell 2.3 per cent to $3.42 and Northern Star slipped 0.8 per cent to $12.90.

In the financial sector, most of the big retail banks were lower, with CBA down 0.9 per cent to $126.20, NAB dropping 0.4 per cent to $36.07 and Westpac dipping 0.1 per cent to $27.21. ANZ was the outlier, rising 0.7 per cent to $28.45, after being the only one of the quartet to lose ground on Friday.

In the real estate sector, Lendlease gained 4.1 per cent to $5.63 after the developer said it had sold its US military housing business to a division of Guggenheim Partners for $480 million, a significant premium to book value.

In small caps, Lindian Resources soared 47.6 per cent to 15.5c after the junior explorer announced a 10-month study had confirmed the feasibility of developing its Kangankunde rare earths project in the East Africa country of Malawi.  

“It will create hundreds of jobs, improve local infrastructure and become a major source of income for the Malawian economy,” said executive chairman Asimwe Kabunga said.

In currency, the Australian dollar was buying 66.74 US cents, from 66.28 US cents at Friday’s ASX close.

Looking forward, minutes from the Reserve Bank’s most recent board meeting will be released on Tuesday.


* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index finished Monday down 16.8 points, or 0.22 per cent, at 7,750.7

* The broader All Ordinaries dropped 21.5 points, or 0.27 per cent, to 7,992.3.


One Australian dollar buys:

* 66.74 US cents, from 66.28 US cents at Friday’s ASX close

* 107.44 Japanese yen, from 106.67 Japanese yen

* 61.94 euro cents, from 61.99 euro cents

* 52.61 British pence, from 52.46 pence

* 109.34 NZ cents, from 109.30 NZ cents.


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