Markets Overview

  • ASX SPI 200 futures up 0.7% to 7,927.00
  • Dow Average up 1.2% to 39,753.96
  • Aussie little changed at 0.6533 per US$
  • US 10-year yield fell 4.3bps to 4.1884%
  • Australia 3-year bond yield fell 2 bps to 3.64%
  • Australia 10-year bond yield fell 2.5 bps to 4.00%
  • Gold spot up 0.7% to $2,193.47
  • Brent futures up 0.1% to $86.35/bbl

Economic Events

  • 10:30: (AU) Australia to Sell A$1 Billion 66-Day Bills
  • 10:30: (AU) Australia to Sell A$1 Billion 129-Day Bills
  • 11:00: (AU) March Consumer Inflation Expectation, prior 4.5%
  • 11:30: (AU) Feb. Private Sector Credit YoY, prior 4.9%
  • 11:30: (AU) Feb. Private Sector Credit MoM, est. 0.4%, prior 0.4%
  • 11:30: (AU) Feb. Job Vacancies QoQ, prior -0.7%
  • 11:30: (AU) Feb. Retail Sales MoM, est. 0.4%, prior 1.1%

Wall Street traders sent stocks higher in the final stretch of a quarter that saw the market surge 10%, with many institutional investors potentially rebalancing their portfolios.

In another volatile session, the S&P 500 closed at a record after almost erasing gains earlier Wednesday. Apple Inc. and Tesla Inc. — this year’s laggards in the megacap space — climbed, while Nvidia Corp. fell. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added over 1%. The Nasdaq 100 underperformed. Treasuries rose, with the market set to close at 2 p.m. New York time on Thursday before the holiday.

Every quarter-end, institutional investors check their exposures to ensure they meet allocation limits between equities and bonds, as well as between domestic and international shares. With stocks set to cap a solid quarter, pension funds are likely to sell an estimated $32 billion in equities to rebalance their positions, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

The S&P 500 approached 5,250. Former President Donald Trump’s Trump Media & Technology Group Corp. powered higher after a stellar Nasdaq debut. Treasury 10-year yields declined four basis points to 4.19%.

Other News

Australia’s export revenue from its crucial resources sector that includes iron ore, liquefied natural gas and coal are forecast to tumble as prices decline, placing pressure on the government’s coffers.

Export earnings, forecast at A$417 billion ($272 billion) in the year to June 30, are expected to slide 12% to A$369 billion in the following 12 months, the Department of Industry, Science and Resources said in a quarterly report released Thursday.

While the outlook for Australian shipments had “improved slightly” since the previous report in December, the government warned that “ongoing falls in bulk commodity prices are expected to bring earnings down further to around A$300 billion in real terms by 2028–29.”

The report makes for sober reading for metals and energy companies as well as Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s ruling center-left Labor party. While elevated commodity prices helped his government usher in its first Budget surplus in 15 years last May, it is warning this year’s fiscal blueprint won’t see comparable upgrades to government receipts.

“The report makes clear that lower resources earnings are expected on the back of weaker global growth and increased global supply,” Treasurer Jim Chalmers said in a statement. “This a timely reminder that revenue upgrades in the May Budget will be substantially smaller than those in our first two budgets.”

The government’s report laid bare a grim picture of expected declines in revenue from iron ore, LNG, nickel, and seaborne coal earnings over the coming years as prices ease from record highs following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The mining and gas sector accounts for 13.4% of Australia’s gross domestic product.

Revenue from iron ore — Australia’s biggest export earner — is expected to remain steady at A$136 billion this fiscal year before declining to A$111 billion in the following 12 months. By 2028-29, sales from the steel-making material could be as low as A$83 billion at an average price per ton of $75, compared with near $100 now.

Meanwhile, earnings from LNG are expected to decline from A$72 billion in 2023-24 to just under A$45 billion by 2028-29, as net importer Japan decreases its reliance on the fossil fuel in favor of nuclear and renewable sources of energy, the report said.

A flood of nickel output from Indonesia, which took industry by surprise and saw mines shuttered in Australia, will contribute earnings of A$3.6 billion this fiscal year and A$2.5 billion the next. The report said some local nickel miners could shut for good.

Lithium revenue has crashed from A$21 billion in 2022-23 to a forecast A$11 billion this fiscal year. The report assumes little recovery in the market, with about $9 billion worth of earnings in 2028-29.

Earnings from copper are expected pick to reach A$12 billion this fiscal year before jumping to A$17 billion in 2028-29.

Australia’s one operating uranium project — BHP Group Ltd.’s Olympic Dam — is expected to double its revenue during the next fiscal year to more than A$2 billion.