Global markets are lit green all over today on the back of a U.S.-China trade deal breakthrough, with gains amplified by U.K. election results.
President Donald Trump has reportedly agreed to press the pause button on the trade war with China, with the two combatants reaching an “in principle” phase-one agreement while Australia slept.
The Chinese government agreed to buy more agricultural goods from the States, and in response, the U.S. will suspend Sunday’s looming tariff hike and loosen up some other tariffs which are already in place.
The Dow Jones gained 220.75 points or 0.79 per cent overnight, while in Europe the Pound is surging as exit polls suggest a landslide victory to Boris Johnson’s conservative party.
London’s Footsie gained 0.79 per cent, while the Frankfurt Stock Exchange’s DAX index gained 0.57 per cent.
Down under, the ASX 200 ended a rollercoaster week by tacking on 30.90 points or 0.46 per cent to end the week at 6,739.70.
Banking stocks had a hay day with gains across the board. In what’s become an unusual case, Commonwealth was the worst performer of the big four.
The country’s biggest lender announced a further $40 million worth of back-payments to underpaid workers from 2010, but claims this will be the last of it. This is on top of the repayments already made, bringing the total figure to $53.1 million. CBA closed 0.43 per cent up today.
NAB gained 1.61 per cent, Westpac gained 1.79 per cent, and ANZ saw the strongest rise with a 2.19 per cent gain.
Our mining darlings breathed a sigh of relief with the U.S.-China developments and their stocks saw a subsequent healthy uptake. BHP rose 2.07 per cent, Rio Tinto 1.73 per cent, and Fortescue continued its month of gains and closed 2.09 per cent up.
Newcrest underperformed and dipped 1.30 per cent. The loss, however, was overshadowed by Bluescope Steel’s 5.19 per cent gain after appointing REA Group, Aristocrat, and Lynas Corporation Director Kathleen Conlon to its Board.
The technology sector finally had a good day after a week of constant losses. WiseTech continued to drop since buying Ready Korea earlier this week, but stock transfer company Computershare offset the loss with a 3.34 per cent rise.
Over east, Asian markets performed strongly. Japan’s Nikkei 225 gained a beefy 576.78 points or 2.46 per cent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng followed suit with a 1.99 per cent gain to add on 537.19 points.
With the strong performance from the Pound sterling, the Aussie dollar is now buying just 51.42 pence. Australia’s currency is buying more U.S. cents than yesterday, however, with one dollar now worth US$0.6925
Today’s ups and downs
Small-cap energy analytic company Simble Solutions was the market’s best performer today. An investor presentation yesterday highlighted the company’s U.K. expansion and 2020 strategy. Simble’s SimbleSense and SimbleConnect software help homes and businesses save money on energy bills and manage their electricity usage. In a somewhat-delayed response to the news, shareholders have jumped on Simble shares today and the company gained 28 per cent to end the week at 3.2 cents per share.
New Zealand’s biggest petrol station operator, Z Energy, slashed its 2020 earnings guidance today for the second time in three months. The company’s initial forecast from May was for earnings to fall between $450 million and $490 million, but today that number was downgraded significantly to between $350 million and $385 million. Z’s shares closed 11.64 per cent down at $4.10 per share.