On Monday the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) started the week strongly and charged higher. The benchmark index rose 0.35% to 6,824.7 points.
Will the market be able to build on this on Wednesday? Here are five things to watch:
ASX 200 expected to fall
It looks set to be a difficult day for the ASX 200 on Wednesday. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised to open the day 30 points or 0.35% lower. This is despite it being a positive night of trade on Wall Street. In late trade the Dow Jones is up 0.1%, the S&P 500 is up 0.1%, and the Nasdaq index is up 0.2%.
Commonwealth Bank is Australia’s strongest brand
Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA) is now Australia’s strongest brand according to Brand Finance Australia’s analysis, courtesy of the AFR. Australia’s largest bank took the top spot from Optus. One of the worst performers was Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO), which suffered a $3.5 billion reduction in its brand value.
Oil prices mixed
Energy producers such as Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) will be on watch after a mixed night for oil prices. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price is down 0.3% to US$52.62 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price has risen 0.1% to US$55.92 a barrel. Concerns about demand due to rising COVID cases has been weighing on prices.
Gold price softens
Gold miners such as Evolution Mining Ltd (ASX: EVN) and Saracen Mineral Holdings Limited (ASX: SAR) could come under pressure after the gold price dropped lower. According to CNBC, the spot gold price is up 0.35% to US$1,848.40 an ounce. US stimulus worries put pressure on the price of the precious metal.
Telstra given buy rating
The Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS) share price is in the buy zone according to analysts at Goldman Sachs. The broker has put a buy rating and $3.80 price target on the telco giant’s shares. It believes Telstra is on course to achieve the mid to upper end of its earnings guidance in FY 2021. In light of this, it continues to forecast a 16 cents per share fully franked dividend this year.