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5 things to watch on the ASX on Thursday

On Wednesday the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) ended its poor run with a 0.15% gain to 6,049.8 points.

Will the market be able to build on this on Thursday? Here are five things to watch:

ASX futures pointing lower.

It looks likely to be another disappointing day of trade for the local share market. According to the latest SPI futures, the local market is expected to open the day a massive 109 points or 1.8% lower on Thursday. This follows a disappointing night of trade on Wall Street which saw the Dow Jones sink 3.1%, the S&P 500 fall 3.3%, and the Nasdaq plunge 4.1% lower.

Market meltdown.

Global share markets were in meltdown overnight with many major indices shedding significant value. According to CNBC, both the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 posted their biggest one-day drops since early February, while the Nasdaq index suffered its largest single day sell-off since June 2016. Rising rate fears and a rotation out of technology shares has weighed on the market. Tech shares such as Afterpay Touch Group Ltd (ASX: APT) and Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) could come under significant pressure today.

Oil prices sink.

It won’t just be tech shares coming under pressure today. The shares of energy producers such as Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) and Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) could be in the red this morning after oil prices sank lower. The WTI crude oil price fell 2.8% to US$72.83 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price tumbled 2.7% to US$82.73 a barrel.

Ramsay’s Capio offer recommended.

After the market closed on Wednesday Ramsay Health Care Limited (ASX: RHC) advised that the board of directors of Capio AB has unanimously decided to recommend that shareholders accept Ramsay’s offer to acquire the hospital operator for SEK 58 cash per share. Ramsay CEO Craig McNally believes the transaction is “financially compelling, providing the opportunity for substantial synergies for Ramsay Générale de Santé, as well as further acceleration of Ramsay’s global growth strategy.”

Dividends being paid.

A number of shares are due to pay their latest dividends to eligible shareholders on Thursday. These include building materials company Adelaide Brighton Ltd (ASX: ABC), plumbing parts company Reliance Worldwide Corporation Ltd (ASX: RWC), mining giant South32 Ltd (ASX: S32), engineering company Southern Cross Electrical Engineer Ltd (ASX: SXE), and online travel agent Webjet Limited (ASX: WEB).

When the dust settles from today's selloff I think investors ought to snap up this top growth share. It was recently 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 AFTERPAY T FPO and Appen Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Ramsay Health Care 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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