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  • Australian shares are down again on Thursday with trade wars and oil prices weighing.
  • The financial and energy sectors were the biggest drags on the market

The Australian share market is lower again on Thursday, with the ASX 200 Index down 0.34% at the time of writing, trading at 5,366 between a low of 5,347 and 5,388. Wall Street ended on a sour note as markets brace for the Nonfarm Payrolls data this Friday following a dismal ADP report overnight. Coupled with trade war escalations, risk-is highly sensitive.

There was more ratcheting up with the trade war rhetoric overnight with the US administration stepping up consideration of economic measures against China, holding it accountable for failing to prevent the global spread of the new coronavirus.   

The Nikkei reports that “in recent days, the president looks to have strengthened his belief that origins of the virus are related to a laboratory in China’s Wuhan. He has instructed intelligence agencies to gather information as quickly as possible. “

“We’ll be reporting on it over the next period of time,’Trump said Tuesday in response to a reporter’s question. ‘We want to find out what happened so it never happens again,’ he added later.

Regardless of the origin of the virus, Trump’s Republican Party is calling for sanctions on China, accusing Beijing of covering up the epidemic and citing the government’s lack of transparency.

‘I am very confident that the Chinese Communist Party will pay a price for what they did here, certainly from the United States,’ Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said last month in a Fox News interview.

Meanwhile, and yet again, the financial and energy sectors were the biggest drags on the market – down 1.19 and 1.61 per cent respectively. The price of a barrel of oil fell 4.0 per cent overnight to below $US30bbls. This followed the news that US crude stockpiles ticked up and diesel inventories swelled, weighing on energy stocks. The worst-hit in eh the ASX energy stocks were Oil Search, losing 2.71 per cent, to $2.87

ASX 200 Index’s 38.2% Fibo is a key resistance 

The 38.2% Fibonacci level (5470) still acts as a key resistance barrier. The index has been trading between there and the 23.6% Fibo since the end of March. The bears will be looking for an extension below the COVID-19 lows of 4402. However, on a break higher will extend towards a 50% mean reversion at 5794 ahead of a 61.8% golden ration at 6127.