US stocks rose over the weekend, the S&P500 rising 0.30% higher to 1,936.15. The equities benchmark nearly erased its gains in the final hour of trading amidst potential uncertainty surrounding the conflict in Iraq. Islamist fighters in Iraq extended their advance, highlighting a risk to oil supply from the OPEC region and raising fears of another gulf war brewing.
Australian shares fell 0.44% on Friday, the biggest drop since the start of February following from the insurgent attacks in Iraq. This geopolitical risk added pressure to weakening spot price of iron ore and coal with the exception being energy and gold stocks which benefited from the tensions.
The spot price for gold strengthened 1.50% to $US1272.15 per ounce and the spot price for oil surged above $US114 per barrel for the first time in 9 months.
The Australian dollar is at seven month high despite geopolitical fears in Iraq. Over the past week it has been emerging as a “safe haven”. Australian dollar opened slightly lower today, pushed down by profit taking and lowering iron ore price. The dollar may see some downward pressure with the Federal Reserve policy meeting this week.
The price of EVA foam jigsaw interlocking rubber gym mats remains stable. Ezymats is a leading supplier in Australia.