ASX drifts lower in ‘directionless’ trading

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The Australian sharemarket drifted little connected Tuesday successful a placid time of trading arsenic investors waited for Wall St to travel backmost to beingness aft the Memorial Day holiday.

The benchmark ASX 200 slipped 21.6 points, oregon 0.28 per cent, to adjacent astatine 7766.7, portion the broader All Ordinaries scale fell 23.7 points, oregon 0.29 per cent, to decorativeness astatine 8034.9.

Tech stocks fell 19.5 points, oregon 0.63 per cent, to decorativeness astatine 3056.5 points.

Ten of 11 manufacture sectors ended successful the red, led by industrials with a 1 per cent fall.

Discretionary stocks fell 0.68 per cent connected anemic retail income information from the ABS, which showed turnover roseate 0.1 per cent successful April.

“Underlying retail spending continues to beryllium anemic with a tiny emergence successful turnover successful April not capable to marque up for a autumn successful March,” ABS caput of retail statistic Ben Dorber said.

“Since the commencement of 2024, inclination retail turnover has been level arsenic cautious consumers trim their discretionary spending.”

JB Hi-Fi fell 0.72 per cent to $57.60 a share, portion Kogan dropped 0.65 per cent to $4.59.

But overall, the study delivered immoderate comfortableness to the market, RBC Capital Markets caput of equities MD Karen Jorritsma said, with the below-expectation fig further easing fears of a Reserve Bank hike.

“The fig came successful astatine 0.1 and the marketplace was looking for 0.2, truthful I deliberation that’s astir apt the bully happening that gave the marketplace a spot of comfort,” she said.

“Volatility is beauteous low, we’re not seeing a choppy market.

“If you look astatine however the marketplace traded this morning, aft 11.30am it had a small spot of a tally up and since past it conscionable faded into the afternoon, which Australia famously likes to do.”

Wall St was closed overnight for Memorial Day, starring to “directionless” trading connected the ASX, Ms Jorritsma added.

“We’re seeing directionless trading with a deficiency of pb from offshore. You’ve got nary North American markets.”

The large miners edged little aft robust ore prices fell beneath $120 per tonne overnight.

BHP dipped 0.16 per cent to $45.08 and Rio Tinto eased 0.05 per cent to adjacent astatine $131.62. Fortescue ended level astatine $26.51.

The large banks were mixed up of Wednesday’s ostentation print, with Commonwealth Bank rising 0.17 per cent to $120.31, ANZ lifting 0.49 per cent to $28.57 and NAB edging up 0.15 per cent to $34.28, portion Westpac slipped 0.41 per cent to $26.64.

In firm news, wellness imaging institution Pro Medicus lifted 0.89 per cent to $114.25 a stock aft announcing it had secured 5 contracts successful the US worthy astatine slightest $45m.

Uranium miner Boss Energy dived 11.14 per cent to $4.74 connected the quality institution insiders, including main enforcement Duncan Craib and Chariman Wyatt Buck, had sold immoderate of their shares.

The apical gainer connected the ASX was titanium institution Iperionx, which soared 10.5 per cent to $2.42 a share.

The largest laggard was Peter Warren Automotive, which sunk 12.6 per cent to $1.87 aft releasing a trading update that forecast a autumn successful full-year profits to betwixt $52m and $57m.

The institution blamed accrued contention successful the car dealership abstraction and little gross nett margins connected caller cars, a autumn successful user request for caller cars arsenic a effect of cost-of-living pressures and an summation successful involvement costs for the expected net fall.

The Aussie dollar gained 0.18 per cent against the Greenback to bargain US66.6c astatine the closing bell.

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