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Market Opener – 12 Mar 2018

Local Markets Commentary
The Australian market opens a new week’s trade following strong gains for US equities markets overnight Friday. 

Over the weekend, China revealed 839.3B yuan worth of net new lending during February, against an expected 900B, and a reported 2.9 trillion in January.

Meanwhile, the National People’s Congress, which continues this week, approved indefinite terms of office for presidents.

Locally today, a weekly capital city residential property price report is due pre-trade.

Companies trading ex-dividend today include APO, CTX and LOV. Please see p3 for detailed information.

In overnight Friday mixed commodities trade, oil swung higher. US gold futures settled a little higher.

LME copper and nickel rallied.

Iron ore (China port, 62% Fe) dropped further.

The $A was pushed to ~US78.50c after trading at ~US78.05c early Friday evening.

Overseas Market Commentary
US equities markets headed higher from open overnight Friday, but major European equities indices chopped and swung.

Traders digested mixed data releases, and assessed US aluminium and steel tariff developments and likely outcomes from the newly-announced proposed meeting between the leaders of North Korea and the US.

Well before US markets opened, the US February employment report revealed 313,000 new jobs were created, but that wages growth pulled back to 2.6% year-on-year.

For the month, wages rose just 0.1%, half the expected rate, while only 200,000 new jobs had been anticipated.

Earlier, Germany’s January industrial production had disappointed, slipping 0.1% for the month following expectations of a 0.7% rise, and after falling 0.5% in December.

In the UK, January industrial output improved 1.3% for the month, after falling at that rate in December. 

Tonight in the US, an economic optimism index and monthly national budget statement are due.
12/03/2018 7:05:00 AM

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