The Aussie market is poised to open slightly lower after Wall Street fell overnight, weighed down by healthcare and materials stocks in quiet trading ahead of the Federal Reserve’s two-day policy meeting on Thursday.
The SPI is down six points at 5,096.
Locally, in economic news on Wednesday, the Westpac-Melbourne Institute Leading Indexes of Economic Activity is due out.
No major equities news is expected.
- SPI futures down 6pts or 0.1% to 5096 about 7.15am Sydney time
- ASX tumbled 1.4% on Tuesday
- AUD at 74.52 US cents, 84.21 Japanese yen, 67.07 Euro cents and 52.66 British pence
- On Wall St, Dow +0.1%, S&P 500 -0.2%, Nasdaq -0.5%
- In Europe, Stoxx 50 -0.8%, FTSE -0.6%, CAC -0.8%, DAX -0.6%
- In London, BHP -6.5%, Rio -4%
- Spot gold -0.4% to $US1230.17 at 1.40pm New York time
- Brent crude -2.6% to $US38.49 at 1.15pm New York time
- Iron ore -4.8% to $US52.88
- In LME trading, copper -1%, aluminium -1.5%, zinc -2.4%, nickel -0.6%, lead -2.7%
What’s on today
China: Premier Li Keqiang gives his only press conference of the year as the National People’s Congress ends.
Federal Reserve policy decision at 5am Sydney time on Thursday. Chair Janet Yellen hosts press conference half an hour later.
Overseas data: NZ balance of payments, NZ Global Dairy Trade auction, US consumer prices Feb, US housing starts Feb, US MBA mortgage applications (weekly), US industrial production (Feb.), UK unemployment and average earnings (Nov.-Jan.)
Earnings: Fedex, Finmeccanic
UK Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne presents his annual budget in a speech to the House of Commons. He’ll give new growth and deficit forecasts.