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Australian stocks tumble amid Coronavirus fears

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Australian shares will fall when trade begins after the long weekend amid fears the spread of the deadly coronavirus will hurt global markets.

Australian shares have tumbled in early trade amid fears the spread of the deadly coronavirus will infect global economic growth.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 125.8 points, or 1.77 per cent, at 6,964.7 at 1015 AEDT. The broader All Ordinaries index fell 130.0 points, or 1.82 per cent, to 7072.3 as the market opened after the Australia Day long weekend.

The S&P/ASX200 index finished Friday up 2.5 points, or 0.04 per cent, at 7,090.5 points while the All Ordinaries index closed 4.2 points higher, or 0.06 per cent, at 7,203.2.

Overnight Wall Street indices finished in the red amid worries the coronavirus will significantly weigh on global economic growth.

Australian indices were a sea of red at 1015 AEDT with glimmers of green among the gold stocks.

Concerns over the coronavirus are dominating financial markets, in a generally risk-off environment, with equities suffering and fixed income benefiting, an ANZ research note says.

IG market analyst Kyle Rodda says China remains in a state of shutdown as authorities look to contain the viruses spread.

"China's financial markets will not re-open, as it currently stands, until February 3rd," he said.

Locally this week, investors are waiting to see the Reserve Bank of Australia's quarterly consumer price index data for the three months to December.

The Australian dollar was buying 67.62 US cents, down from 68.46 US cents at the market close on Friday.

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Gold a safe haven

Gold was one of the few investments heading higher as worries about the coronavirus outbreak led to a steep market slide.


Gold is now up more than 20 per cent in the past year, and trading near US$1600 an ounce, its highest level since 2013.

Other precious metals, such as silver and platinum, have rallied too.

Some experts wonder if gold could top US$2000 in the not-too-distant future.

Gold last hit an all-time high of just above US$1900 in 2011 in the midst of the European debt crisis.

Gold and gold miners often do well during times when investors are afraid.

- With agencies

Source: 9News

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