5 things to watch on the ASX 200 on Thursday

Here are a few things for Australian investors to look out for today.

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On Wednesday, the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) had a subdued session and ended the day a fraction lower. The benchmark index fell 3.5 points to 7,848.1 points.

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

ASX 200 expected to fall

The Australian share market looks set for a tough session on Thursday following a poor night on Wall Street. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to open the day 54 points or 0.7% lower this morning. In the United States, the Dow Jones was down 0.5%, the S&P 500 fell 0.3%, and the Nasdaq dropped 0.2%.

BHP makes third offer for Anglo American

BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP) shares will be in focus on Thursday after the mining giant confirmed that it has made a third offer for Anglo American plc (LSE: AAL). However, despite bumping its offer nicely for the copper miner, BHP has once again had its proposal rejected. Anglo American said: "The Board considered BHP's Latest Proposal carefully, concluded it does not meet expectations of value delivered to Anglo American's shareholders, and has unanimously rejected it." In response to the news, BHP shares ended the day 4.5% lower on Wall Street.

Oil prices drop

It looks set to be a disappointing session for ASX 200 energy shares including Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT) and Woodside Energy Group Ltd (ASX: WDS) after oil prices tumbled overnight. According to Bloomberg, the WTI crude oil price is down 1.7% to US$77.32 a barrel and the Brent crude oil price is down 1.5% to US$81.67 a barrel. Oil prices are on track for a third consecutive decline.

Xero FY 2024 results

The Xero Ltd (ASX: XRO) share price will be one to watch today when the cloud accounting platform provider releases its FY 2024 results. Goldman Sachs has pencilled in a 22% increase in revenue to NZ$1,709 million. This is a touch ahead of the consensus estimate of NZ$1,696 million. Goldman also expects Xero's earnings to grow quicker than the market is expecting. It is forecasting EBITDA of NZ$480 million for FY 2024. This represents a 59% increase on the prior corresponding period and is ahead of the consensus estimate of NZ$469 million.

Gold price tumbles

It looks set to be a tough session for ASX 200 gold miners Newmont Corporation (ASX: NEM) and Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) after the gold price tumbled overnight. According to CNBC, the spot gold price is down 1.85% to US$2,381 an ounce. This was reportedly driven by profit taking from traders after some strong gains recently.

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has positions in Woodside Energy Group and Xero. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended Goldman Sachs Group and Xero. The Motley Fool Australia has positions in and has recommended Xero. 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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