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5 things to watch on the ASX on Friday

On Thursday the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) made it two days of gains in a row with a solid 0.5% push higher to 6,057.3 points.

Will the local market be able to make it three in a row today and finish the week on a high? Here are five things that could shape today’s trade:

ASX futures are pointing lower.

According to the latest SPI futures, the Australian share market is expected to open the day lower by 0.2% or 12 points. This follows a mixed day of trade on Wall Street which saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average rise 0.4%, but the S&P 500 fall 0.1% and the NASDAQ slide 0.7% lower.

Tech shares will be on watch.

The main drag on Wall Street’s performance overnight was the tech sector. With declines being seen across the board, Australia’s tech sector could come under pressure on Friday. The shares of Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) and Xero Limited (ASX: XRO) will be on watch after making 52-week highs yesterday.

Second time lucky for the Prospa IPO? Maybe not.

On Wednesday the highly anticipated Prospa Group Limited (ASX: PGL) IPO was pulled minutes before its shares were due to commence trading on the ASX and pushed back 48 hours. This was done so it could “clarify queries raised by ASIC yesterday in relation to Prospa’s small business loan terms.” According to the AFR, the company met last night and decided that it “was in the best interest of the company and new investors” to postpone the IPO to a later date.

Oil prices storm higher.

The shares of Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Oil Search Limited (ASX: OSH) could be on the rise on Friday after oil prices stormed higher overnight. According to Bloomberg, WTI crude oil rose 1.8% to US$65.89 a barrel and Brent crude oil climbed a sizeable 2.6% to US$77.33 a barrel.

OZ Minerals moves closer to acquiring Avanco Resources.

According to an announcement by OZ Minerals Limited (ASX: OZL) released after the market closed yesterday, the copper miner has declared its bid for Avanco Resources Limited (ASX: AVB) unconditional. In addition to this, OZ Minerals will assume control of Avanco board decisions through the appointment of three new directors (including a new chairman) and the retirement of three existing Avanco directors.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Appen Ltd and Xero. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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