S&P/ASX 200 trades near flatline as Sydney lockdown gets extended for another two weeks

U.S. consumer prices have increased sharply amid supply constraints and a continued rebound in the costs of travel-related services.

Argonaut Resources NL - S&P/ASX 200
Spot gold was flat at US$1,806.07 per ounce on Wednesday.

S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) has gained 0.093% to 7,339 points by about 1.40 pm as Sydney’s current lockdown conditions were extended for at least another two weeks to July 30.

Tech stocks were being dragged down by Afterpay (ASX:APT), which fell heavily after Bloomberg reported that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) plans to offer a competing buy-now pay-later product in partnership with Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS).

Gold mining shares lifted, and higher oil prices helped the likes of Woodside Petroleum (ASX:WPL), Oil Search (ASX:OSH) and Santos (ASX:STO).

US inflation surges

Wall Street edged lower on Tuesday after the US reported that in June inflation surged at its fastest pace in nearly 13 years.

Consumer prices increased 5.4% in June as compared with a year earlier — the largest monthly lift since August 2008.

Greater Sydney lockdown extended

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced the lockdown in Greater Sydney will be extended for two weeks after 97 new COVID-19 cases were detected.   

The current restrictions will now run until at least 11.59pm on July 30, which includes remote learning for schools in lockdown areas and the rules in place across regional NSW.

NSW Chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant said: “This is a hard lockdown.

“I cannot stress this enough that everyone needs to take it seriously as hard lockdown.”

Top gainers

Today’s top gainers on the ASX include Argonaut Resources NL (ASX:ARE) (+16.67%), Blackearth Minerals NL (ASX:BEM) (+9.52%), Calima Energy Ltd (ASX:CE1) (+10.00%), Golden Rim Resources Ltd. (ASX:GMR) (+12.50%), Kin Mining NL (ASX:KIN) (+26.09%), Medallion Metals Ord Shs (ASX:MM8) (+9.80%) and Shree Minerals Limited (ASX:SHH) (+14.29%).

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