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5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Friday

On Thursday the S&P/ASX 200 index was on form again and pushed a further 0.25% higher to 7,162.5 points.

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

ASX 200 expected to trade flat.     

The S&P/ASX 200 index looks set for a subdued finish to the week. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised open the day flat this morning. This follows a disappointing night on Wall Street which in late trade sees the Dow Jones down 0.5%, the S&P 500 trading 0.45% lower, and the Nasdaq down 0.7%.   

Oil prices higher again.

Energy shares Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) could push higher today after oil prices rose again. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price climbed 0.9% to US$53.77 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price rose 0.3% to US$59.30 a barrel. This was driven by a smaller than expected inventory build-up.

Gold price hits 7-year high.

Gold miners Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) and Saracen Mineral Holdings Limited (ASX: SAR) could end the week on a positive note after the gold price climbed to a seven-year high. According to CNBC, the spot gold price is up 0.6% to US$1,621.50 an ounce. Increasing demand for safe haven assets is supporting the precious metal.

Mayne Pharma result.

The Mayne Pharma Group Ltd (ASX: MYX) share price could be on the move today when it releases it half year results. The pharmaceutical company is widely expected to release a very weak result due to tough trading conditions in the generic drugs market. Expectation are so low that earlier this week Mayne Pharma’s shares tumbled to a multi-year low.

Inghams result.

Another company that is expected to report a soft result is poultry producer Inghams Group Ltd (ASX: ING). It is one of the most shorted shares on the Australian share market due to concerns that the droughts and bushfires have weighed heavily on its margins.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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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