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ASX drops 1.2% as US labour data came in hotter than expected

On Wednesday, the Australian sharemarket experienced a decline, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index dropping by 1.2 per cent, or 94.2 points, to 7569.9 points at the close.

This decline was attributed to concerns sparked by strong US labour data, leading to fears of prolonged high interest rates by the Federal Reserve due to persistent inflation. All 11 sectors of the market ended in negative territory, with the technology and real estate sectors suffering notable losses.

Technology stocks, particularly WiseTech, faced significant declines, while real estate companies like Scentre and GPT also recorded sharp losses. Additionally, the energy sector experienced a 2 per cent decline following a continued drop in oil prices amid prospects of a ceasefire in the Middle East.

Corporate news included Woolworths agreeing to sell 5 per cent of Endeavour, resulting in a slight decline in Woolworths’ share price and a 3 per cent drop in Endeavour’s shares. Qantas shares were down 1.2 per cent amidst investigations into a potential hack of its mobile app.

Meanwhile, BHP’s shares declined by 1.7 per cent amid falling iron ore prices and uncertainty surrounding its takeover bid for Anglo American.