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Wall St down 2%, Aust set to follow suit

Chris Hutchings
AAP

The Australian share market is set to open close to 1.5 per cent lower.

The Australian share market looks set to open around 1.5 per cent lower after Wall Street's key index again take a painful tumble.

At 0700 AEDT on Friday, the share price futures index was down 82 points, or 1.41 per cent, at 5,730.

In the US, stocks have fallen anew in another trading session with big swings, as investors remain on edge after several days of volatile trading.

Major indexes cut their losses somewhat in afternoon trading after falling more than 2 per cent earlier, but not by enough to move into the green.

In late afternoon trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 2.12 per cent, the S&P 500 had lost 1.88 per cent and the Nasdaq Composite had dropped 2.02 per cent, to 6,949.55.

Locally, in economic news on Friday, the Reserve Bank of Australia will release its statement on monetary policy following Tuesday's board meeting and interest rate decision.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics is due to release December's housing finance data.

In equities news, REA Group, Skycity Entertainment and New Corp is set to release earnings reports.

The Australian market on Thursday turned around a weak start to the day as bargain hunters bought stocks beaten up in Monday and Tuesday's plunge.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index rose 13.9 points, or 0.24 per cent, to 5, 890.7 points while the broader All Ordinaries index lifted 13.7 points, or 0.23 per cent, to 5,995.2 points.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar, one of the worst performing currencies in the offshore session, is under 78 US cents, and below 85 yen.

The local currency was trading at 77.98 US cents at 0700 AEDT on Friday, from 78.25 on Thursday.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 77.98 US cents, from 78.25 on Thursday

* 84.87 Japanese yen, from 85.81 yen

* 63.60 euro cents, from 63.76 euro cents

* 56.02 British pence, from 56.27 pence

* 107.89 NZ cents, from 108.72 cents

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 0700 AEDT was $US1,317.47 per fine ounce, from $US1,311.66 per fine ounce on Thursday.

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 0700 AEDT:

* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 2.0116pct, unchanged

* CGS 4.75pct April 2027, 2.8392pct, unchanged

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* March 2018 10-year bond futures contract at 97.110 (implying a yield of 2.890pct), from 97.115 (implying a yield of 2.885pct) on Thursday

* March 2018 3-year bond futures contract at 97.82 (2.18pct), unchanged.

(*Bond market closes taken at 1630 AEDT previous local session; currency closes taken from 1700 AEDT previous local session)