• The ASX 200 finished lower today
  • Xero dragged down Tech sector 
  • Australia’s jobless rate is at 3.4% lowest in almost half a century


The ASX 200 index fell for the first time this week, down by 0.30%, as Tech stocks dragged the bourse lower.

Sector leader Xero (ASX:XRO) was the worst performing large cap stock today, as its shares fell 7.5% after flagging weak UK results.

Xero said the UK would “continue to be more subdued than we would like”. For FY22, the NZ-based software company reported a net loss of NZ$9.1m.

Energy stocks were the best performers today despite shares in Origin (ASX:ORG) falling by as high as 6% in early trading.

Origin posted a $1.43bn loss for the full year despite a strong energy market as it flagged more uncertainties in FY23.

Overnight, oil prices edged higher by 1% as Chinese Premier Li pushed for more pro-growth measures from local officials.

The US and Iran are also continuing talks around the nuclear deal which could be a big positive for oil supply, and therefore a negative for prices if it ever gets over the line.

Meanwhile, according to ABS data today, Australia’s unemployment rate is at a 48-year low. The jobless rate fell from 3.5% to 3.4% in July as the economy added 20,000 new jobs.

“The fall in unemployment in July reflects an increasingly tight labour market, including high job vacancies and ongoing labour shortages, resulting in the lowest unemployment rate since August 1974,” said Bjorn Jarvis, head of labour statistics at the ABS.

Tony Sycamore, Market Analyst at City Index, said the low jobless rate will flow into higher wages, and in turn, higher inflation.

“As a result, the RBA will likely raise rates by 50bp at its meeting in September, which would take the cash rate to 2.35%, near the nominal neutral rate of around 2.5%,” said Sycamore.

In a move that could infuriate China further, Taiwan and the US have begun formal negotiations on a trade and economic initiative. The announcement comes amid high tensions as China continues its military exercises targeting Taiwan.

Looking ahead, a bunch of economic data will be released in the US tonight including: jobless claims, existing home sales, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve manufacturing index.



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Intellectual property services firm IPH Ltd (ASX:IPH) jumped 16% after reaching a deal to acquire Canadian IP firm Smart & Biggar for $387 million.

It also reported a 6% increase in revenue to $385.1 million, and an NPAT of $52.6m, down 2% YoY.



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Blackmores (ASX:BKL) fell 10% as it reported statutory NPAT of $30.6m, up 7.0% on pcp on revenue of $649.5m, which was 12.8% higher than pcp.

Oncology company Telix Pharma (ASX:TLX) fell 6% after announcing that a net half year loss of $70.9 million on revenue of $24 million.