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5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Thursday

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On Wednesday the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) returned to form and charged notably higher. The benchmark index jumped 1.8% to 6,063.2 points.

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

ASX 200 to charge higher again.

The ASX 200 looks set to continue its recovery on Thursday. According to the latest SPI futures, the benchmark index is expected to rise 39 points or 0.65% at the open. This follows an extremely positive night of trade on Wall Street which saw the Dow Jones storm 1.75% higher, the S&P 500 jump 1.55%, and the Nasdaq push 1% higher.

Xero insider selling.

The Xero Limited (ASX: XRO) share price will be on watch this morning after reports of some heavy insider selling. According to the AFR, Goldman Sachs helped the business and accounting software provider’s founder, Rod Drury, offload $198 million worth of shares. The shares were believed to have been offered at a 3.9% discount of $99.00 per share.

Oil prices sink lower.

It could be a bad day of trade for energy producers including Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) after oil prices sank lower overnight. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price is down 2.7% to US$41.60 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price has fallen 2.6% to US$44.40 a barrel. Weak gasoline demand in the United States put pressure on energy prices.

Gold price sinks lower.

Gold miners such as Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX: NCM) and Resolute Mining Limited (ASX: RSG) could come under pressure today after the spot gold price sank lower. According to CNBC, the spot gold price fell 1.45% to US$1,950.70 an ounce overnight. A rebound in the US dollar and economic recovery hopes weighed on the precious metal.

Shares trading ex-dividend.

Once again, another group of shares are going ex-dividend this morning and could trade lower. This includes mining giant BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP), private health insurer NIB Holdings Limited (ASX: NHF), financial services company Perpetual Limited (ASX: PPT), and utility infrastructure company Spark Infrastructure Group (ASX: SKI).

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James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of Xero. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended NIB Holdings 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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