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ASX finishes on a high

ASX drops as optimism wanes. Source: Getty

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 (^AXJO) has finished on a high, etching gains of 1.10 per cent before closing.

The broader All Ordinaries index (^AORD) also finished up 1.13 per cent.

One Australian dollar was buying 67.51 US cents at 4.23 AEST.

What happened this morning?

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 (^AXJO) fell 0.46 per cent at 10.41 AEST, as the stock market consolidates after last week’s optimism about economic recovery.

The broader All Ordinaries index (^AORD) also fell 0.36 per cent at 10.41 AEST.

Eased lockdown restrictions buoyed the share market, which finished the month of May up 4.2 per cent. Restaurants, pubs and clubs are now allowed more customers at their venues in New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Victoria, and intra-state travel is allowed as of today. 

However, investors will wait to see whether Australia has avoided a technical recession when GDP figures for the March quarter are released on Wednesday.

Bank stocks had losses of about 1.0 per cent early, but recovered and pushed the financial sector 0.76 per cent higher since.

Health and materials were the best performing sectors, higher by 2.06 and 1.65 per cent respectively.

What happened over the weekend?

US stocks finished mostly higher after President Donald Trump announced measures against China in response to new security legislation that were less threatening to the US economy than investors had feared.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 17.53 points, or 0.07 per cent, to 25,383.11, the S&P 500 gained 14.58 points, or 0.48 per cent, to 3,044.31, and the Nasdaq Composite added 120.88 points, or 1.29 per cent, to 9,489.87.

Twitter was down 2.0 per cent and Facebook Inc shares slipped 0.2 per cent, a day after Trump signed an order threatening social media firms with new regulations over free speech.

The S&P 500 has etched gains of more than 30 per cent since its March low, with expectations of a quick economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic the main driver.

With AAP.

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