Australian shares are set to fall at the open, with lacklustre results from America’s big banks being a drag on Wall Street.
Market snapshot at 7:20am (AEDT):ASX SPI futures -0.3pc at 6,222, ASX 200 (Monday’s close) flat at 6,251AUD: 71.7 US cents, 54.74 British pence, 63.4 euro cents, 80.33 Japanese yen, $NZ1.06US: Dow Jones -0.1pc at 26,385, S&P 500 -0.1pc at 2,906, Nasdaq -0.1pc at 7,976Europe: FTSE 100 flat at 7,437, DAX +0.2pc at 12,020, CAC +0.1pc at 5,509, Euro Stoxx 50 +0.1pc at 3,450Commodities: Brent crude -0.4pc at $US71.26/barrel, spot gold -0.2pc at $US1,287.64/ounce
ASX futures were down 16 points, or 0.25 per cent, at 7:00am (AEST).
The Australian dollar was steady at 71.7 US cents, 54.85 British pence, and 80.3 Euro cents.
At 11:30am (AEST), the Reserve Bank will release the minutes of its April meeting, during which it kept interest rates on hold — as it has done for the last 2.5 years.
Investors will be paying close attention to whether the RBA provides further commentary on Australia’s slowing economic growth, and any clues on when the next interest rate move might happen.
“Today’s minutes could cause some volatility in the Australian dollar because they should provide some clarity on current RBA thinking,” Commonwealth Bank currency strategist Joseph Capurso said.
“Any hint that the RBA was more dovish in the [meeting] minutes and considering an easing bias would weigh on the Australian dollar.”
Economists are increasingly expecting the RBA to announce a rate cut within the next few months.
Bank earnings disappoint
Meanwhile, US markets were weighed down by major banks Goldman Sachs (-3.8 per cent) and Citigroup (-0.1 per cent), even though their earnings per share beat market expectations.
“Goldman’s sales and equity trading revenue disappointed, while Citigroup’s consumer unit was