5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Monday

On Friday the S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) finished the month with a day in red. It closed the day a sizeable 1.6% lower.

Will the local market be able to rebound on Monday? Here are five things to watch:

ASX futures pointing higher.

According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 0.45% or 25 points higher on Monday. This follows a positive end to the week on Wall Street which saw the Dow Jones rise 0.8%, the S&P 500 climb 0.8%, and the Nasdaq also push 0.8% higher. Easing trade war concerns were the catalyst for these gains.

U.S. and China make trade progress.

Markets are expected to push higher thanks to the U.S. and China making trade progress at the G-20 meeting. According to CNBC, the U.S. will hold off on raising China tariffs to 25% after Presidents Trump and Xi agreed to a 90-day trade truce. The White House said: “President Trump has agreed that on January 1, 2019, he will leave the tariffs on $200 billion worth of product at the 10 percent rate, and not raise it to 25 percent at this time.”

Australian dollar climbs.

Easing trade war concerns led to the Australian dollar rallying higher at the end of last week. The Aussie climbed 1% in late trade to close the week at 73 U.S. cents. The local currency has been tipped to continue its rise when markets reopen on Monday.

Oil prices slide.

Energy shares including Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) will be on watch on Monday after oil prices finished the week with a day in red. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price fell 1% to US$50.93 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price dropped 0.75% to US$59.46 a barrel. These declines meant that oil prices had their worst month in over a decade in November.

Brickworks offloads 5.9 million SOL shares.

Late on Friday Brickworks Limited (ASX: BKW) announced that it has sold approximately 5.9 million Washington H. Soul Pattinson and Company Limited (ASX: SOL) shares at an average price of $26.42 per share. The sale generated net proceeds of approximately $115 million, which will be used to strengthen the balance sheet by reducing the building materials company’s net debt.

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Washington H. Soul Pattinson and Company Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Brickworks. 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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