ASX trading set for small drop at open

Australian shares are set for a dip when the ASX opens after US markets retracted late in the session overnight.

The benchmark SPI 200 futures contract was down 11 points, or 0.2 per cent, to 5,405.0 at 0800 AEST on Wednesday, indicating a subdued start to trading.

Wall Street’s main indices finished higher after healthcare stocks rallied, oil prices surged and a number of countries and US states eased coronavirus-induced restrictions in an attempt to revive their economies.

However, stocks pulled back sharply late in the session after US Federal Reserve vice chair Richard Clarida made downbeat comments about the depth of the economic contraction.

On the home front, the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Wednesday will publish its revised retail trade figures for March, which will shed more light on how COVID-19 and social distancing has changed consumer spending.

In April, the bureau published the preliminary figures for March.

The ABS will also publish lending indicators data.

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark index finished Tuesday up 87.3 points, or 1.64 per cent, to 5,407.1, while the All Ordinaries index gained 88.6 points, or 1.64 per cent, to 5,478.1.

One Australian dollar buys 64.31 US cents at 0802 AEST, down from 64.46 US cents on Tuesday’s close.

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