Australian Market Significantly Lower

The Australian stock market is significantly lower on Monday, extending the losses in the previous session, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 staying above the 7,100 level, following the broadly negative cues from Wall Street on Friday, with weakness across all sectors amid concerns of further monetary policy tightening after the RBA said it will need to raise interest rates further as inflation could exceed its expectations this year.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is losing 78.70 points or 1.09 percent to 7,126.90, after hitting a low of 7,119.90 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is down 97.90 points or 1.31 percent to 7,369.70. Australian stocks closed sharply lower on Friday.

Among the major miners, BHP Group is losing almost 1 percent, Rio Tinto is down more than 1 percent, OZ Minerals is declining almost 3 percent, Mineral Resources is slipping more than 3 percent and Fortescue Metals is sliding more than 2 percent.

Oil stocks are higher, Woodside Petroleum and Santos are gaining almost 1 percent each, while Origin Energy is edging up 0.1 percent and Beach energy is edging up 0.3 percent.

Among tech stocks, Xero is losing almost 3 percent and WiseTech Global is declining more than 3 percent, while Appen is slipping almost 2 percent, Afterpay owner Block is sliding more than 6 percent and Zip is down more than 3 percent.

Gold miners are weak. Gold Road Resources and Evolution Mining are losing more than 2 percent each, while Resolute Mining and Northern Star Resources are down 1.5 percent each. Newcrest Mining is edging down 0.3 percent.

Among the big four banks, Commonwealth Bank is flat, ANZ Banking is edging down 0.5 percent and National Australia Bank is down more than 1 percent. Westpac is gaining more than 2 percent after reporting half-year earnings that came in ahead of market expectations. It also lifted its dividend.

In the currency market, the Aussie dollar is trading at $0.701 on Monday.

On Wall Street, stocks fluctuated wildly over the course of the trading day on Friday before eventually ending the session mostly lower. With the drop on the day, the major averages extended the sell-off seen during trading on Thursday.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq tumbled 173.03 points or 1.4 percent to 12,144.66, once again hitting its lowest closing level in well over a year. The S&P 500 slid 23.53 points or 0.6 percent to a nearly one-year closing low of 4,123.34 and the Dow fell 98.60 points or 0.3 percent to a two-month closing low of 32,899.37.

The major European markets also moved to the downside on the day. While the French CAC 40 Index tumbled 1.7 percent, the German DAX Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index slumped by 1.6 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively.

Crude oil prices closed higher on Friday, and posted a weekly gain as well, amid worries about supply following the European Union's decision proposing some of its toughest measures yet against Russia. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for June ended higher by $1.51 or 1.4 percent at $109.77 a barrel. WTI crude futures gained nearly 5 percent in the week.

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