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S&P/ASX 200 sheds 0.57% as RBA says job market will take longer to recover

Gold scaled a new all-time peak of US$2,072.50 in early Asian trade and is set for its ninth straight weekly gain, as demand was boosted by a softer dollar and falling US treasury yields.

Horizon Minerals Ltd - S&P/ASX 200 sheds 0.57% after RBA says job market will take longer to recover
Iron ore prices jumped another 2.7% to hit US$121.27 a tonne but it has not done local materials stocks any good this morning

S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) is down 0.57% to 6,008 at 12.47 pm after the materials sector fell 1.22%, giving up a chunk of yesterday’s commodity-driven gains.

Unemployment rate to peak at 10%

RBA’s August monetary policy statement released today shows the central bank has revised up the unemployment rate to a peak of 10% in December 2020.

The bank’s assistant governor Luci Ellis said even though the economy had done a bit better than initially expected, the recession had left deep scars on the country.

Ellis said it will take longer than hoped for the nation's jobs market to recover from the COVID-19 recession.

He said the scars are likely to extend even to families, with the tough jobs market leading to fewer people marrying or moving in with their partner.

COVID-19 update

Victoria reported 451 new COVID-19 cases and 11 deaths today, including a woman in her 50s.

Nearly 300,000 Americans could be dead from COVID-19 by December 1, University of Washington warned on Thursday, although it said 70,000 lives could be saved if people were scrupulous about wearing masks.

The US death toll currently stands at over 159,000, the most of any country in the world, with 4.8 million known cases.

India’s COVID-19 tally crossed 2 million on Thursday, while fatalities were recorded at 41,631.

Top gainers

Today’s top gainers on the ASX include MGC Pharmaceuticals Ltd (ASX:MXC) (+18.18%), Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) (+9.37%), Archtis Ltd (ASX:AR9) (+16.00%), Linius Technologies Ltd (ASX:LNU) (+13.33%), Predictive Discovery Ltd (ASX:PDI) (+10.00%) and PNX Metals Ltd (ASX:PNX) (+11.11%).

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