Market Wraps

Morning Wrap: ASX 200 to rise, S&P 500 shrugs off hot US inflation data

Wed 13 Mar 24, 8:36am (AEST)

ASX 200 futures are trading 14 points higher, up 0.18% as of 8:30 am AEDT.

The S&P 500 rallied to another fresh all-time high overnight despite the hotter-than-expected inflation report, a bounce in yields and US dollar snapped the hot streak for gold prices, Core Lithium announces a sizeable loss for the first-half and failure to meet contractual supply obligations, Oracle shares rally on revenue and guidance beats and Appen decided to withhold announcing a takeover offer.

Let's dive in.

Overnight Summary

Wed 13 Mar 24, 8:26am (AEST)

Name Value % Chg
Major Indices
S&P 500 5,175 +1.12%
Dow Jones 39,005 +0.61%
NASDAQ Comp 16,266 +1.54%
Russell 2000 2,065 -0.02%
Country Indices
Canada 21,831 +0.28%
China 3,056 -0.41%
Germany 17,965 +1.23%
Hong Kong 17,094 +3.05%
India 73,668 +0.22%
Japan 38,798 -0.06%
United Kingdom 7,748 +1.02%
Name Value % Chg
Commodities (USD)
Gold 2,164.0 -1.15%
Iron Ore 113.15 +0.13%
Copper 3.937 +0.18%
WTI Oil 78.08 -0.06%
Currency
AUD/USD 0.6607 -0.11%
Cryptocurrency
Bitcoin (AUD) 107,357 -1.64%
Ethereum (AUD) 5,972 -2.16%
Miscellaneous
US 10 Yr T-bond 4.155 +1.24%
VIX 13.84 -9.07%

US Sectors

Wed 13 Mar 24, 8:26am (AEST)

SECTOR % CHG
Information Technology +2.54%
Communication Services +1.17%
Consumer Discretionary +0.99%
Consumer Staples +0.63%
Health Care +0.48%
Industrials +0.45%
SECTOR % CHG
Financials +0.45%
Materials -0.06%
Energy -0.16%
Real Estate -0.36%
Utilities -0.99%

S&P 500 SESSION CHART

S&P 500 intraday
S&P 500 rallies to finish near best levels (Source: TradingView)

ASX TODAY

  • ASX 200 to rise following a strong lead from Wall Street, where tech and growth-heavy sectors led to the upside

  • Core Lithium CEO Gareth Manderson to step down, effective 18-Mar

  • Core Lithium reports (after hours Tue) first-half net loss of $167.5m

  • Appen responds to ASX price query, notes receipt of indicative proposal

  • PSC Insurance rides sector growth as Goldman fields inbound interest (AFR)

BROKER MOVES

  • Accent Group upgraded to Overweight from Equal-weight and target increased to $2.45 from $1.95 (Morgan Stanley)

  • Boral downgraded to Underperform from Outperform but target remains $6.25 (CSLA)

  • Brickworks downgraded to Underperform from Outperform but target increased to $31.60 from $26.50 (CSLA)

  • Core Lithium downgraded to Sell from Hold and target cut to $0.14 from $0.19 (Canaccord)

  • CSR downgraded to Underperform from Outperform but target remains $9.00 (CSLA)

  • James Hardie downgraded to Underperform from Outperform but target increased to $64.50 from $60.00 (CSLA)

  • Metcash upgraded to Buy from Outperform and target increased to $4.60 from $4.10 (CSLA)

  • Telstra upgraded to Buy from Hold with $4.25 target price (Bell Potter)

MARKETS

  • S&P 500 rallied intraday, finished near best levels and recouped losses from the previous two sessions

  • Megacap tech stocks pushed the market higher, led by Nvidia (+7.2%), Meta (+3.3%) and Microsoft (+2.7%)

  • Equalweight S&P 500 and small cap Russell 2000 positive but lagging in performance

  • Markets shrugged off another hotter-than-expected CPI print as well as higher yields and US dollar

  • Markets currently expecting the first Fed rate cut to take place in June

  • Gold's nine day winning streak comes to an end, gives back prior two days gains

  • Leveraged long Nvidia ETF experiencing record volumes and inflows (Bloomberg)

  • Bank of America strategists boost S&P 500 profit forecast for 2024, citing economic growth and AI investment cycle (Bloomberg)

  • Chinese equities finding favour among some global investors (Bloomberg)

  • Crypto assets experiencing huge inflows with US$10.3bn so far in 2024 almost matching US$10.6bn from all of 2021 (Bloomberg)

  • Barclays says recent gold rally in anticipation for rate cuts overdone and premature (CNBC)

INTERNATIONAL STOCKS

  • Oracle cloud revenue growth tops estimates, provides upbeat guidance (Bloomberg)

  • Shell reconsidering emissions cut timelines and may slow pace to focus on shareholder returns (Bloomberg)

  • New 3M CEO is a company outsider with M&A background (Bloomberg)

CENTRAL BANKS

  • BOJ will likely to offer guidance on bond buying pace upon ending YCC to avoid causing market disruptions (Reuters)

  • Hawkish BoE member Mann says UK has a long way to go for inflation pressures to be consistent with 2.0% target (Reuters)

GEOPOLITICS

  • US targeting TikTok, China's access to advanced technology (Bloomberg)

  • Biden urged to open up investigation into Chinese shipbuilding by US steel unions (FT)

  • US intelligence agencies warn of "increasingly fragile world order" that is challenging US primacy (Reuters)

  • Biden weighs conditioning future military aid to Israel if it proceeds with full invasion of Rafah (Bloomberg)

ECONOMY

  • US headline and core inflation comes in hotter-than-expected (Reuters)

  • UK unemployment rate rose for the first time since July, wage growth eased (Bloomberg)

  • Australian business conditions back above long-run average but inflation pressures persist (Reuters)

Industry ETFs

Wed 13 Mar 24, 8:25am (AEST)

Name Value % Chg
Commodities
Lithium & Battery Tech 46.5 +0.85%
Uranium 28.15 +0.39%
Steel 70.14 +0.26%
Copper Miners 38.11 -0.50%
Strategic Metals 51.96 -0.84%
Silver 22.09 -1.16%
Gold Miners 29.58 -1.83%
Industrials
Construction 70.972 +1.39%
Agriculture 23.0 +1.14%
Aerospace & Defense 126.95 -0.77%
Global Jets 19.59 -2.15%
Healthcare
Cannabis 5.15 +0.78%
Biotechnology 138.04 -0.48%
Name Value % Chg
Cryptocurrency
Bitcoin 32.79 -1.15%
Renewables
Hydrogen 5.52 -1.78%
CleanTech 9.61 -1.84%
Solar 44.62 -3.79%
Technology
Semiconductor 229.77 +2.07%
Robotics & AI 32.35 +1.60%
Sports Betting/Gaming 17.8329 +1.24%
E-commerce 23.32 +1.17%
Video Games/eSports 64.06 +1.17%
Electric Vehicles 24.51 +0.99%
Cybersecurity 30.86 +0.98%
Cloud Computing 22.03 +0.55%
FinTech 27.09 +0.33%

Another Hot One

US inflation (Feb) was a touch higher than expected across the board.

  • Core inflation up 0.4% MoM vs. 0.3% consensus

  • Core inflation up 3.8% YoY vs. 3.7% consensus (down from 3.9% in Jan)

  • Headline inflation up 0.4% MoM, in-line with consensus

  • Headline inflation up 3.2% YoY vs. 3.1% consensus (down from 3.1% in Jan)

Some of the key takeaways from the inflation report:

  • Not a great CPI report but there were some positives under the hood

  • Shelter is keeping core inflation elevated, up 5.4% year-on-year in February (but down from the abrupt 6.9% spike in January)

  • Gasoline was a drag on headline inflation, up 3.8% month-on-month after a 3.3% drop in January

  • Food inflation dropped to 2.2% year-on-year in February, down from 8.5% a year ago and the lowest since May 2021

  • Putting it all together: The path to 2.0% remains a bumpy one. Gasoline and shelter contributed more than 60% of the monthly increase in inflation. Shelter inflation is widely expected to decline (due to its long lag vs. real time data).

Analysts weigh in on the data:

  • Fitch: "A sober reminder of the tendency for inflation to perpetuate itself ... [the three month annualised core CPI] has risen to 3.8% in February, up from 3.0% last October. That is not the direction the Fed wants to see."

  • Goldman: The composition of the CPI move "was disinflationary ... with a sharp normalisation in non-housing services inflation and a return to the Q4 trend for the owners' equivalent rent category ... We also expect the rise in used car prices to more than reverse this spring ... We continue to expect the FOMC to leave the Fed funds rate unchanged at the March meeting and begin the easing cycle in June."

  • BofA: "On net, we think this CPI is a favourable report with respect to our outlook for monetary policy. We find good news in the deceleration in services inflation and the February data suggests the OER-rent deviation from January is a one-off event ... That said, the Fed has said they need services inflation to moderate further in case goods deflation has ended."

Key Events

ASX corporate actions occurring today:

  • Trading ex-div: Ive Group (IGL) – $0.095, Bisalloy Steel (BIS) – $0.08, Glennon Small Companies (GC1) – $0.01, Data#3 (DTL) – $0.126, Brambles (BXB) – $0.231, Pepper Money (PPM) – $0.05, Mercury NZ (MCY) – $0.087, Imdex (IMD) – $0.015, Downer (DOW) – $0.06, Perpetual (PPT) – $0.65 

  • Dividends paid: Lendlease (LLC) – $0.06, Sequoia Financial (SEQ) – $0.02

  • Listing: None

Economic calendar (AEDT):

  • 6:00 pm: UK GDP (Jan)

Written By

Kerry Sun

Content Strategist

Kerry holds a Bachelor of Commerce from Monash University. He is an avid swing trader, focused on technical set ups and breakouts. Outside of writing and trading, Kerry is a big UFC fan, loves poker and training Muay Thai. Connect via LinkedIn or email.

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