On Wednesday the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) was back on form and stormed higher after strong GDP data was released. The benchmark index rose 0.8% to 6,818 points.
Will the market be able to build on this on Thursday? Here are five things to watch:
ASX 200 futures pointing lower
The Australian share market could give back some of its gains on Thursday. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is poised to open the day 7 points lower. In late trade on Wall Street, the Dow Jones is up 0.2%, the S&P 500 is down 0.5%, and the Nasdaq index is tumbling 1.5% lower. Rising bond yields are spooking investors once again.
Mining giants go ex-dividend
Mining giants BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP) and Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO) will be trading ex-dividend this morning and could act as a drag on the ASX 200 index. The Big Australian is going ex-div for its $1.30 per share fully franked interim dividend, whereas Rio Tinto is trading ex-div for its fully franked final dividend of $5.17 per share. The former will be paid to eligible shareholders on 23 March and the latter will be paid to its respective shareholders on 15 April.
Oil prices jump
Energy producers such as Santos Ltd (ASX: STO) and Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) will be on watch after oil prices jumped overnight. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price is up 3.5% to US$61.82 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price is up 3% to US$64.60 a barrel. Positive comments out of OPEC drove prices higher.
Gold price sinks
Gold miners Regis Resources Limited (ASX: RRL) and St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM) could come under pressure on Thursday after the gold price sank. According to CNBC, the spot gold price is down 1% to US$1,715 an ounce. Rising bond yields weighed on the precious metal.
More shares going ex-dividend
It isn’t just the mining giants trading ex-dividend this morning. A number of other ASX 200 shares are going ex-dividend and could trade lower. This includes biotherapeutics giant CSL Limited (ASX: CSL), private health insurer NIB Holdings Limited (ASX: NHF), student placement and language testing company IDP Education Ltd (ASX:IEL), and retail giant Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW).
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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 CSL Ltd. and Idp Education Pty Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Woolworths Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended NIB Holdings Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.