ASX edges higher on back of positive Wall Street lead

By Najma Sambul

The Australian sharemarket has opened up to a 100-day-high after Wall Street’s modest gains on Friday sent the stock market to its highest level since early December.

The S&P/ASX200 gained 8.30 points or 0.11 per cent to 7,502.10 at 10.15 am AEDT.

Wall Street finished a strong week with more gains.
Wall Street finished a strong week with more gains.Credit:AP

Tech, communication, and real estate were up and Xero and WiseTech Global increased by 4.73 per cent and 4.17 per cent respectively.

ANZ is the only big four bank in the green this morning with a 0.34 per cent gain while CBA, Westpac and NAB are marginally lower.

In mining BHP, Rio Tinto, Fortescue were all in the red. Rio Tinto was down 1.1 per cent in early trade.

Medical equipment company Resmed and Insurance Australia Group Ltd were the biggest decliners both falling by 5.47 per cent and 3.35 per cent.

A strong week for Wall Street closed out with modest gains on Friday, sending the stock market to its highest level since early December.

The S&P 500 rose 0.2 per cent to clinch its third winning week in the last four and was near its highest level since the summer, before fading at the end of the day.


The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 28 points, or 0.1 per cent, while the Nasdaq composite gained 0.9 per cent. The Australian sharemarket is set for a positive start to the week, with futures pointing to a rise of 12 points, or 0.2 per cent, at the open.

Helping to lead the way was American Express, which jumped 10.5 per cent despite reporting weaker profit and revenue for the latest quarter than expected. It gave a forecast for earnings through 2023 that topped Wall Street’s expectations and announced a planned increase to its dividend.

Another big gain for Tesla’s stock also supported the market. It rose 11 per cent following its stronger-than-expected profit report for the end of 2022 released earlier in the week.

They helped offset a 6.4 per cent loss for Intel following a jarring warning from the chipmaker. Not only did its revenue and earnings fall short of expectations last quarter, it also gave a forecast for revenue this quarter more than $US2 billion ($2.8 billion) below analysts’ expectations.

Earnings reporting season is entering its heart, and companies have been offering mixed results and forecasts. That’s helped lead to some big swings in markets.

Two competing big ideas have been sending Wall Street veering recently. On one hand are worries about a steep drop-off in profits and a severe recession for the economy following all the Federal Reserve’s increases to interest rates last year meant to crush inflation. On the other are hopes that cooling inflation may allow the Fed to take it easier on rates.

Reports also showed that income growth for Americans slowed in December, while consumer spending fell off a bit more sharply than expected.

This week could be another busy one for markets, with several high-profile events on top of the Fed’s announcement. The European Central Bank will give its latest decision on rates, the US government will release its latest monthly check on the jobs market and more than 100 companies in the S&P 500 will report their quarterly results.

The Adani Group said it was considering legal action against Hindenburg following its allegations of stock market manipulation and accounting fraud.

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