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S&P/ASX 200 dips as new COVID-19 cases in NSW continues to grow

Gold prices gained 0.1% to US$1,781.19 per ounce on Monday as tamer-than-expected U.S. inflation data allayed fears of an early monetary policy tightening by the US Federal Reserve.

Calima Energy Ltd - S&P/ASX 200
The US Fed’s preferred inflation measure, the personal consumption expenditures price index, rose 3.4% from a year ago, in line with Wall Street estimates.

S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) slipped 0.11% to 7,300 points by about 12.55 pm as NSW recorded 18 new Covid-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8 pm last night, bringing the total number of infections in the Bondi cluster to 130. 

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said while the drop from Sunday’s 30 new cases was encouraging, people should be prepared for cases to rise in the coming days.

Berejiklian added: “While the numbers today are less than the numbers yesterday, we have to be prepared for the numbers to bounce around and we have to be prepared for the numbers to go up considerably.”

IT, travel stocks down

The IT sector on the S&P/ASX 200 was by far the worst-performing sector with a 3.16% decline while property, industrials and financials were also in the red.

Buy now, pay later firm Afterpay (ASX:APT) was one of the leading decliners individually with a 7% fall.

Travel stocks were also lower following the weekend decision to put greater Sydney and surrounding areas into a two-week lockdown.

Qantas (ASX:QAN) slipped 4.3% while Webjet (ASX:WEB) dropped 3.5%.

Top gainers

Today’s top gainers on the ASX include Calima Energy Ltd (ASX:CE1) (+12.50%), Cipherpoint Ltd (ASX:CPT) (+18.52%), Cauldron Energy Ltd (ASX:CXU) (+11.43%), Platina Resources Limited (ASX:PGM) (+10.13%) and Theta Gold Mines Ltd (ASX:TGM) (+7.69%).

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