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5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Wednesday

On Tuesday the S&P/ASX 200 index gave back its morning gains to finish the day 0.1% lower at 6,658 points.

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

ASX expected to drop lower. 

According to the latest SPI futures, the Australian share market looks set to continue its slide this morning. Current futures contracts are pointing to a decline of 0.5% or 34 points at the market open. This follows a disappointing night of trade on Wall Street which saw the Dow Jones fall 0.7%, the S&P 500 drop 0.95%, and the Nasdaq tumble 1.5% lower.

Oil prices higher.

However, it could be a good day of trade for Australian energy producers such as Oil Search Limited (ASX: OSH) and Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) on Wednesday. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price has risen 1.5% to US$58.77 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price has climbed almost 1.5% to US$65.81 a barrel.

Tech shares under pressure.

Australian tech shares including Altium Limited (ASX: ALU) and Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) could come under pressure again on Wednesday after the technology-focused Nasdaq index fell heavily overnight. The Nasdaq dropped lower after the U.S. Federal Reserve suggested that a 0.5% rate cut might be unlikely in the near term. Instead the central back feels a 0.25% cut would be more appropriate.

Gold price volatile.

On Tuesday a number of gold miners such as Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX: NCM) and Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) charged to 52-week highs after the gold price rose to a multi-year high. These shares look unlikely to build on this on Wednesday after the precious metal gave back some of its gains. According to CNBC, the spot gold price is up 0.6% to US$1,426.70 an ounce, but is lower than where it traded during Asian trade.

Rio Tinto’s Norges Bank ban lifted.

The Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) share price was given a boost yesterday after Norges Bank confirmed that it has lifted its 10-year ban on investing in the mining giant’s shares. Rio Tinto had been blacklisted due to its waste management system at the Grasberg copper mine in Indonesia. But having offloaded the asset, Rio Tinto is back in the good books.

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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 Altium. 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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