• Local shares bounced back on Wednesday following a strong rally in New York overnight
  • Neuren was once again the best performing large cap today
  • Former PM Paul Keating ashed out at the AUKUS deal

 

The ASX 200 bounced back on Wednesday as investors piled back to risk assets following a soft inflation reading in the US.

Overnight, major indexes rose by 1%-2% after US headline CPI showed that inflation rose 6% from a year ago, the smallest annual gain since September 2021.

Goldman Sachs, Barclays, Wells Fargo, and NatWest are now expecting the Fed to pause its rate hike on March 22nd.

Tech stocks, which usually rise as rates fall, were the major gainers today with the ASX 200 Info Tech (XIJ) index rising by over 2%.

ASX bank stocks also rebounded, tracking movements in Wall Street where US regional bank stocks rallied.

Energy retail stocks AGL Energy (ASX:AGL) and Origin Energy (ASX:ORG) held steady as households in NSW, South Australia and parts of Queensland brace for up to a 24% jump in power bills on July 1 under the Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) draft decision, which was released today.

And despite the 5% crash in crude prices overnight, ASX oil stocks managed to hold their ground today.

Best performing large cap was once again Neuren Pharma (ASX:NEU), which spiked another 15% after rising by a total of 30% on Monday and Tuesday.

Neuren has become a market darling after receiving a “historic” world’s first US FDA approved drug, DAYBUE (trofinetide) for the treatment of Rett syndrome.

 

Other non-ASX news

Elsewhere, a raft of data released this morning showed that China’s economy strengthened in the first two months of the year, driven by booming retail sales, which were up 3.5% from the same period last year.

Former PM Paul Keating has lashed out at the AUKUS deal, calling it “the worst international decision” by an Australian Labor government in more than 100 years.

Meanwhile US-based Signature Bank is reportedly facing a criminal probe as US prosecutors investigated the bank’s dealings with crypto clients just before it went bust.

Looking ahead to tonight’s session, a raft of data will be released out of the US including: US retail sales, industrial production, and the NAHB housing market index.

 

BIG CAP WINNERS

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Pexa Group (ASX:PXA) rose 6% on no specific news.

 

BIG CAP LOSERS

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Northern Star Resources (ASX:NST) was down 1% after telling investors that gold production at Pogo is currently halted while repairs are underway on the ball mill motor. NST, however, said its overall production guidance remains unchanged.

Chalice Mining (ASX:CHN) fell 2.5% after lodging its half-year report late yesterday which provided an overview of its operations.