• ASX 200 was up 0.56% today
  • Investors flock to gold stocks on flight to safety
  • Tech stocks plunge 2.5% as risk aversion kicks in

 

The benchmark ASX 200 index closed 0.56% higher today as investors flocked into gold stocks.

It was a flight to safety reaction as investors weighed the prospects of a possible global recession.

The spot gold price itself traded relatively flat at US$1,861, but it was the precious metal’s traditional role as a safe haven that sparked a rush into gold stocks.

“Non-interest bearing gold is a safe-haven again, and it could be on the verge of a major breakout if prices can recapture the $1885 level,” said OANDA senior market analyst Edward Moya.

Moya believes that gold should remain supported as “inflationary pressures weigh further, China’s COVID situation remains a big unknown, and corporate America continues to slash outlooks.”

“There might be no stopping gold right now as the wall of worry on Wall Street continues to grow,” he added.

Other ASX sectors to have caught a bid today include Staples (up by 1.5%) and Financials (up 1%).

Tech was the only outlier after falling by 2.5% following Nasdaq’s 2.35% drop overnight.

Investors have been worried about the outlook of tech companies after Snap Inc (the owner of Snapchat) plunged 40% overnight following a profit warning.

Snap CEO, Evan Spiegel in a staff memo: “We continue to face rising inflation and interest rates, supply chain shortages and labour disruptions, platform policy changes, the impact of the war in Ukraine, and more.”

 

BIG CAP WINNERS

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AngloGold (ASX:AGG) and Northern Star (ASX:NST) were the biggest large cap movers in the gold sector, up by around 3-4% each.

Costa Group (ASX:CGC) jumped 8% after holding its AGM today. The company said that forecast for CY22 operating and growth capex is expected to be in line with previous guidance.

Costa said its annualised EBITDA will be approximately $5m higher, whilst the NPAT result is forecast to be $6.4m lower for the full calendar year.

 

BIG CAP LOSERS

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BHP (ASX:BHP) was down 9% after trading ex-dividend today. BHP is also distributing around 915 million new shares in the newly renamed Woodside Energy Group (ASX: WDS) to shareholders.

The merger between BHP and Woodside into the new WDS entity will take place on June 1, with the WDS shares set to start trading on June 2.