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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 just a fraction higher at 6,653.2 points.

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

ASX to open lower.

The Australian share market is expected to open lower this morning despite U.S. and European markets pushing higher. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised to open the day 0.1% or 8 points lower. On Wall Street the Dow Jones rose 0.25%, the S&P 500 climbed 0.3%, and the Nasdaq pushed 0.2% higher.

Bank shares on watch.

Australia’s big four banks will be on watch this morning after they each responded to the Reserve Bank of Australia’s cash rate cut. Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ASX: ANZ) has been the only bank to pass the rate on in full, whereas the rest of the banks have only passed on some of cut to customers.

Oil prices crash lower.

Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) and Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) shares could come under pressure this morning after oil prices crashed lower due to demand concerns. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price sank 4.5% to US$56.43 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price dropped 3.6% to US$62.72 a barrel.

Gold price higher.

Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) and St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM) shares could be on the rise on Wednesday after the gold price rebounded strongly. According to CNBC, the spot gold price rose 2.1% to US$1,418.90 an ounce amid concerns over global growth and trade tensions.

Dividends being paid.

Eligible shareholders of Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG) and National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB) can look forward to being paid their latest dividends today. Macquarie is paying its shareholders a partially franked 360 cents per share dividend, whereas NAB is paying a fully franked 83 cents per share dividend to its shareholders.

Blue chips named as buys.

If you like trustworthy, stable, high-performing companies that pay fat fully franked dividends – then you'll love these buy-rated blue chips! Stock #1 is a beloved old Australian company turning its attention to high-margin businesses... and rapidly returning cash to shareholders with its hefty dividend. While Stock #2 is an online powerhouse that’s rapidly gaining market share all around the globe... poised for years (or even decades) of tremendous growth...

Even better, Stock #3 offers a whopping 6.5% grossed-up dividend! Which beats the rates on term deposits right out of the water – and offers the potential for capital gains, too.

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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 Macquarie Group Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of National Australia Bank 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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