ASX 200 Trades Flat, Tech and Financials Retreat

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ASX 200 Trades Flat, Tech and Financials Retreat

By Oliver Gray - The S&P/ASX 200 was down just 6.10 points to 7,326.40 in Thursday’s mid-morning deals, following two sessions of consecutive decline, with cautious investors continuing to rotate away from riskier growth assets as central banks locally and abroad move to aggressively tighten monetary policies in the face of surging inflation pressures.

ASX 200 Futures were trading 0.08% lower.

Among stocks, the Materials sector was surging 1.8%, with Rio Tinto Ltd (ASX: RIO ) up 2.31%, BHP Billiton Ltd (ASX: BHP ) adding 2.15% and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (ASX: FMG ) gaining 1.66%.

Gold miners saw significant gains as spot prices rallied to 8-week highs with St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM ) up 5.95%, Gold Road Resources Ltd (ASX: GOR ) adding 5.61%, Newcrest Mining Ltd (ASX: NCM ) up 4.13%, Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST ) gaining 9.14%, Perseus Mining Ltd (ASX: PRU ) up 6.55%, Chalice Gold Mines Ltd (ASX: CHN ) lifting 5.01% and Evolution Mining Ltd (ASX: EVN ) rallying 10.24%.

Technology was down around 1% as Appen Ltd (ASX: APX ) fell 0.86%, Megaport Ltd (ASX: MP1 ) lost 0.2%, Brainchip Holdings Ltd (ASX: BRN ) eased 0.94%, Altium Ltd (ASX: ALU ) dipped 2.37%, Computershare Ltd. (ASX: CPU ) lost 1.48%, Xero Ltd (ASX: XRO ) retreated 1.54% and Technology One Ltd (ASX: TNE ) fell 1.77%.

Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P ) was down 1.09% after reporting a record $A167.4 million in revenue for the December quarter, while Afterpay Touch Group Ltd (ASX: APT ) dipped 2.18%.

Financials also lost about 1% with Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG ) down 1.15%, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ASX: ANZ ) losing 0.35%, Commonwealth Bank Of Australia (ASX: CBA ) falling 1.225, National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB )  dipping 1.55% and Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC ) easing 0.8%.

Meantime, shares in Block Inc (NYSE: SQ ) have listed on the ASX today, following the $A39 billion deal with Afterpay struck last year.

On the bond markets, Australia 10-Year rates were at fresh 12-week highs of 1.994% while United States 10-Year yields held near 2-year highs of 1.861%.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 fell 0.35% to 12,568.

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