• The S&P/ASX 200 falls on first day of Christmas trading week, down 0.21%
  • Nickel Industries (ASX:NIC), gold miners lead ASX large caps gainers
  • Star Entertainment Group tumbles as CEO hits back at increases to casino tax in NSW


‘Twas was the week before Christmas, when the ASX markets were stirring … but not in a good way.

At the close on Monday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 was down 0.21% after falling 0.3% at the open, with the ASX following global markets which fell lower on Friday.

US stocks closed out lower, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average losing 0.85%, the S&P 500 falling 1.11% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite declining 0.97%.

The FTSE and STOXX 600 both also fell in Friday trade after central banks continued the 2022 trend of lifting rates to put the inflation genie back in the bottle.

The US Federal Reserve last week lifted rated by 50bps, while both the ECB and BoE followed suit with 50bps rises.

Meanwhile, The Australian Government Future Fund is repositioning its ~$200 billion portfolio for a world of higher inflation and increased volatility. The fund will  lift its exposure to select commodities including gold, and lower its proportion to equities, as well as being wary of regulatory risk in areas such as utilities.

Leading the winners on the ASX today was the materials sector up 3.08%, followed by communication services up 0.86% and the real estate sector which rose 0.63%.

Consumer discretionary led the laggards, down 3.70% followed by utilities which was down 2.73% and health care which fell 1.90%.


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Nickel Industries (ASX:NIC) lead the ASX large caps winners, while gold miners Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN) and Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) both rose 4%.

While the price of gold is still down 3% year-to-date it is trending up. The NYSE Arca Gold Miners Index was up 13.62% in November.

In an article by VanEck portfolio manager and strategist Joe Foster said he expects gold to remain around the US$1,700 to US$1,800 per ounce mark in the near future given economic conditions.

VanEck runs the oldest global gold equities exchange traded fund in the world, the VanEck Gold Miners ETF (ASX:GDX). 

“The strong performance by gold equities during the month demonstrates both their leverage to the gold price and how oversold they have been over the past couple of years – both historically and relative to the gold price,” he said.



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Start Entertainment Group (ASX:SGR)  CEO Robbie Cooke hit back at a move by the NSW Government to raise an extra $364 million in taxes from casino operators over the next three years.

Cooke has argued that the casino operator is already paying its fair share of taxes.

“We are not sure how the Government modelled its financials nor the basis for suggesting The Star does not pay its fair share of taxes,” he said in an ASX announcement.

Specifically, in addition to state gaming taxes, The Star also pays millions in corporate taxes, with total taxes paid as a percentage of The Star’s profits being around 70%, and as high as 80% in the last 5 years when all the tax regimes are considered.”