ASX hit a new high on Wednesday, but sagged into the doldrums as the session continued as business news subsided and traders waited for US inflation data.
The S & P / ASX200 rose 0.6% to a high of 7334.9 before faltering.
The market closed 0.3% lower at 7,270.2 points, down 22.4 points.
Brickworks led the gains after improving its forecast for underlying earnings. Its shares jumped 11.3 percent to an all-time high of $ 23.40.
The company cited a bullish outlook on the construction boom, with Reece also hitting a new high of $ 23.02 and Fletcher Building hitting its best price in four years, before closing at $ 7.38.
Major miners were stronger on higher iron ore prices with BHP up 0.6%, Rio Tinto up 0.5% and Fortescue Metals up 1%.
Woolworths fell 1.9% after an independent inquiry berated the company’s attempt to open a liquor store near the drylands of Darwin.
Its shares fell to $ 42.63 and Coles fell 2% to $ 16.76.
Some disappointing economic data also weighed in, with Westpac’s measure of consumer confidence falling 5.2%, worse than expected.
The lethargy on the ASX mirrored major Asian markets and followed two days of weak Wall Street advances.
Burman Invest chief investment officer Julia Lee said data released by China showed low consumer prices, but a 9% increase in its producer price index that could be exported through pricing. higher. Trade is expected to remain subdued until US inflation figures are released on Thursday.
“It’s disappointing that we haven’t seen a change from that record at the close to a record,” she said.
“It all sounds like a little nervousness. It’s a big week in terms of inflation.
Lower-than-expected inflation in the United States would be good for markets, while anything above consensus could trigger a sell-off as it increases the chances of an interest rate hike.
Australian banks also underperformed on Wednesday, with the Macquarie Group falling 1.3% to $ 151.41.
Afterpay gained 1.7%, but could not compensate for a 7.5% drop in Altium, 4% in Wisetech and 3.9% in Appen.
Talaria Capital co-chief investment officer Chad Padowitz said the markets are still trading near their all-time highs and are confused by nothing but upcoming inflation data.
“The markets remain very well supported and the level of retailer involvement is quite extraordinary as an indication of speculation, optimism and excess liquidity in the system,” he said.
“I’m not sure what the numbers will show on Thursday, but I think a lot of things seem exaggerated. A lot of things indicate that the cost of money is too low ”.
Utilities continue to see prices rise as part of a rotation to defensive stocks since early June with AusNet up 1.1% and AGL hit a seven-week high of $ 9.16.