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5 things to watch on the ASX on Wednesday

On Tuesday the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) continued its poor run and fell 0.75% to 6,126.2 points due largely to declines in the banking sector.

Will the market be able to bounce back on Wednesday? Here are five things to watch:

ASX futures pointing higher.

According to the latest SPI futures, the Australian share market is expected to open the day higher by 0.15% or 9 points. This follows a mixed night of trade on Wall Street which saw the Dow Jones push almost 0.5% higher. Elsewhere, the S&P 500 dropped slightly and the Nasdaq fell 0.5%.

Oil prices give back gains.

The shares of Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) could be under a little pressure today after oil prices gave back some of their recent gains. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price fell 0.2% to US$75.14 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price dropped 0.4% to US$84.66 a barrel.

Freedom Insurance strategic review.

The Freedom Insurance Group Ltd (ASX: FIG) share price will be on watch on Wednesday after the company revealed the outcome of its strategic review. Based on detailed analysis, the board has decided to implement a restructuring of its insurance business. This will result in the immediate suspension of new business sales of all direct insurance products, though it will continue to service and renew its in force book of policies.

Shares going ex-dividend.

The shares of diversified mining services company Ausdrill Limited (ASX: ASL) and receivable management company Collection House Limited (ASX: CLH) are like to sink into the red this morning after trading ex-dividend for their latest pay outs. Elsewhere, eligible shareholders of MotorCycle Holdings Ltd (ASX: MTO) and Sealink Travel Group Ltd (ASX: SLK) are due to be paid their latest dividends.

Coles supermarkets demerger.

Fund managers and investors will be looking out for a release from Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) in relation to its Coles demerger. According to the AFR, analysts are tipped the conglomerate to release the warts and all account of its $20 billion supermarket business any day now.

Top growth share named as a buy.

This top Australian growth share will be on watch this month after being given a buy rating.

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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 and has recommended Wesfarmers Limited. 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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