ASX 200 Back Above 6,000

US stock markets again made new record highs with the Dow Jones not having posted a down month since the presidential election in November of 2016. If December is a positive month, this would mark a full calendar year with no down month which hasn't happened in the history of the Dow. The Nasdaq 100 also had a strong session, closing 0.7% higher and making a new record high. ASX 200 futures are up 29 points this morning, pointing to a higher open this morning.  

Yesterday's Mid-Year Fiscal and Economic Outlook showed that the Australian government's fiscal position is set to be substantially better than previously expected. The ASX 200 appeared to rally on the news, eventually closing 0.7% higher, back above 6,000. Today, the Reserve Bank releases the minutes from the most recent policy meeting although nothing ground-breaking is expected. The Bank kept rates on hold and maintained a neutral bias so the minutes are unlikely to differ substantially from the prior month.

Gold prices have continued their bounce from multi-month lows reached last week. The current price of US$1,262 is still some way off the year-to-date high of US$1,357 reached in September. There is some evidence to suggest that the demand for bitcoin has taken some gold demand away and with bitcoin now trading just below US$19,000 it is easy to see how some investors have been lured away from the traditional safe haven.   

Data Releases:

–    Australia Monetary Policy Meeting Minutes 11:30am AEDT

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This article was written by William O'Loughlin – Investment Analyst, Rivkin Securities Pty Ltd. Enquiries can be made via william.oloughlin@rivkin.com.au or by phoning +612 8302 3633.