• The ASX tumbled over 1% today, in line with moves on Wall Street overnight
  • Energy stocks tumble after crude prices plunge over 5pc last night
  • The US Fed will make its rate decision later tonight


The ASX 200 tumbled by 1.3% on Wednesday, in line with movements in New York overnight.

As of 3pm AEST, all 11 ASX sectors were trading in the red.

The Energy sector was the biggest loser, down 2.5% as crude prices plunged by more than 5% overnight. Oil giants Woodside Energy (ASX:WDS) and Santos (ASX:STO) shed around 3% each.

Experts believe oil is in “the danger zone” as the banking crisis is crippling the short-term outlook for the economy and driving fears of a recession.

Financials sector also retreated 2% ahead of the Fed decision later tonight, with the Big Four banks suffering a 2% fall each.’

Retailer JB-Hifi (ASX:JBH) meanwhile lifted 1% after the company reported sales growth of 0.8% in Q3 versus the pcp. JB Hi-Fi New Zealand’s revenue delivered the best performance, up by 11% on pcp.

The world’s largest consumer packaging company, Amcor (ASX:AMC), dropped 11% on profit warning, with CEO Ron Delia saying that consumers are cutting back on spending.

To economics data, Aussie retail sales rose 0.4% m/m versus 0.3% forecast, according to data released today. Annual retail sales rose by just 5.4%, its slowest pace since December 2021.


Fed decision tonight

The US Fed is due to make its rates decision later today, New York time.

Analysts believe Fed rates are close to a peak, but risks are more two-sided than some may appreciate.

Blerina Uruci, Chief U.S. Economist at T. Rowe Price expects a 25 basis points hike at today’s meeting.

“This is widely expected by consensus and almost fully priced by markets at this point. The conviction that this is the last hike and a cut will be the next move beyond May is too sanguine in my view,” said Uruci.

Uruci also said the banking sector stress is a factor that will come under consideration.

“…we can have relatively strong conviction about a couple of things. First, we are very close to the end of the rate hike, and second, the Fed will not be able to cut interest rates significantly this year.”



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Ramelius Resources (ASX:RMS) confirms that it now has a stake of 50.1% of Breaker Resources (ASX:BRB) shares.

Backed by Breaker’s board, the deal will see Breaker investors get 1 RMS share for every 2.82 BRB shares they hold. Originally a 41% premium at 40c per share, the deal has grown in immediate value in the weeks since thanks to a resurgent gold price.



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Motor vehicles accessories company ARB Corp (ASX:ARB) fell 7% after reporting that total sales for the 9 months to March was down by $23m from the pcp to $502m.

Ramsay Healthcare (ASX:RHC) fell 5% after saying that momentum in surgical volumes has returned following a slower December/January period. For the 9 months ended March, Ramsay booked a profit before tax of $414m, down from $416.7m a year ago.

Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG) fell 4% after revealing that GenusPlus (ASX:GNP) has won an Electrical Works project with Fortescue at the Pilbara Generation Project worth $30m.

Hub24 (ASX:HUB) fell 3% after saying that it has entered into an agreement for HUB24 to acquire 100% of the ordinary shares of myprosperity.

myprosperity shareholders will receive total consideration of $40 million of HUB24 shares, and up to a further $11.5 million in HUB24 shares, subject to certain performance hurdles over the next 3 years.