The Aussie market is poised to open lower following falls on Wall Street overnight as oil prices retreated after Saudi Arabia said it would not cut production.
The SPI is down 27 points at 4,920.
In local economic news today, the Australian Bureau of Statistics is due to release the wage price index and construction work done figures, both for the December quarter.
In equities space, Wesfarmers, Fortescue Metals, Asciano, Flight Centre, BC Iron, Worley Parsons, Qube Holdings, Sirtex Medical, Bega Cheese, AWE, ThinkSmart, Australian Vintage and Vitaco Holding are expected to post half year results.
Meanwhile Westfield Corp is slated to release full year results and Aristocrat Leisure has its annual general meeting in Sydney.
And, the Australasian Oil & Gas exhibition and conference is on in Perth.
- SPI futures down 27 pts or 0.5% to 4920
- AUD -0.1% to 72.18 US cents
- On Wall St, late, Dow -1.1%, S&P 500 -1.1%, Nasdaq -1.2%
- In Europe, Stoxx 50 -1.6%, FTSE -1.3%, CAC -1.4%, DAX -1.6%
- In London, BHP -6.1%, Rio -3.1%
- Spot gold +1.2% to $US1223.05 at 1.53pm New York
- Brent crude -4.1% to $US33.28 at 2.28pm New York
- Iron ore +US8¢ to $US51.60
What’s on today
Australia DEWR January skilled vacancies, Wage Price Index 4th-Qtr, Construction work done 4th-Qtr. China Feb WBC-MNI consumer sentiment, US weekly mortgage applications, US Feb Markit Services PMI, US Jan new home sales.
Local earnings: Ainsworth Game, Asciano, Atlas Iron, BC Iron, Flight Centre, Fortescue Metals, Qube Holdings, Scentre Group, Sirtex Medical, Wesfarmers, Westfield, WorleyParsons.
Overseas earnings: Target, Lowe’s, Chesapeake Energy, L Brands, Transocean, salesforce.com, Noble Group, Saipem, Airbus Group, Peugeot, Fresenius.
Germany’s Bundesbank publishes annual report. Fed St Louis boss James Bullard speaks. EC publishes economic analysis and recommendations for each EU nation.
Stocks in focus
BHP Billiton shed 6.1 per cent in London, with Rio Tinto falling 3.1 per cent. Zinc retreated 2.1 per cent on the London Metal Exchange, falling from its highest close in four months. Copper, lead and nickel also fell. The one bright spot was iron ore, which edged higher overnight despite comment from BHP that the price outlook remains bleak.