ASX 200 Weekly Wrap: COVID wobbles ASX as shares retreat

What was happening on the ASX 200 last week?
The post ASX 200 Weekly Wrap: COVID wobbles ASX as shares retreat appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia. –

The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) was hit hard by a resurging COVID-19 outbreak in Sydney last week. The index  gave up gains early in the week as the virus took hold in Sydney, extending the damaging economic lockdowns by at least another week.

Tech shares led Friday’s sell off, which saw the ASX 200 lose close to 1%, and erase the mild gains it had built up on Wednesday and Thursday.

Friday’s downward move set the tone for the whole week. ASX tech shares dragged the ASX 200 down for the five trading days, with companies like Xero Limited (ASX: XRO), Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT), Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) and WiseTech Global Ltd (ASX: WTC) all lost value to varying degrees. Afterpay fared rather well, only dipping 0.66%. In contrast, Appen was one of the worst ASX tech performers, shedding a nasty 9%.

ASX tech shares lead market sell off, blue chips close behind

But it wasn’t only ASX tech shares feeling the pain. All four of the major ASX banks lost value as well, with Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ASX: ANZ) copping the worst of it with a 1.7% loss for the week. Other ASX blue chips weren’t helping. Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) was also down 1.7% over the week, as was Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG). Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS) also lost a touch more than 1%.

In contrast, Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW), its recent spin-off Endeavour Group Ltd (ASX: EDV) and Coles Group Ltd (ASX: COL) all had a positive week, putting a stopper in the ASX 200’s overall losses. The big ASX miners also helped. BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP) firmed close to 2% over the week, while Fortescue Metals Group Limited (ASX: FMG) put on 1.2%. Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL) managed a 2.14% gain as well.

Some other ASX winners included Sydney Airport Holdings Pty Ltd (ASX: SYD), which jumped 35% at one point on Monday after a takeover bid was lobbed its way (more on that later). Challenger Ltd (ASX: CGF) also benefitted similarly, rising 14% at one point. Except the news that got investors hot under the collar with the latter was a group of institutional investors fighting over a large stake of its shares.

How did the markets end the week?

As we’ve flagged, it wasn’t a great week for ASX shares.

Monday started things off with a mild gain of 0.09%. Tuesday saw the ASX go into reverse, with a loss of 0.73%. But Wednesday and Thursday saw the strongest days for the share market, with back to back gains of 0.9% and 0.2% respectively.

But it was Friday’s loss of 0.93% that really set the tone for the week, and sealed the loss.  Overall, the index started the week out at 7,308.6 points and ended it at 7,273.3 points – a fall of 0.48%.

Meanwhile, the All Ordinaries Index (ASX: XAO) also had a rather disappointing week. The All Ords started out at 7,587.1 points and finished up at 7,545.3 points – meaning it fared even worse than the ASX 200 with a loss of 0.55%.

Which ASX 200 shares were the biggest winners and losers?

It’s now time for our salacious Foolish gossip pages section, where we look at the ASX 200’s best winners and poorest losers of the week gone by. So get the coffee brewing as we, as always, start with the losers:

Worst ASX 200 losers
% loss for the week

Polynovo Ltd (ASX: PNV)


Nine Entertainment Co Holdings Ltd (ASX: NEC)


Clinuvel Pharmaceuticals Ltd (ASX: CUV)


Appen Ltd (ASX: APX)


Healthcare company Polynovo was the ASX 200 wooden spooner last week, with a hefty 13.4% slide in value. Despite the size of this drop, there really wasn’t too much to report on for Polynovo last week. Looking at it another way though, and Polynovo has been on a downwards slide for a few months now. So perhaps this is just the latest chapter in that story.

Media company Nine also had a week to forget. There wasn’t any major news out of Nine last week either. But perhaps the fine that the Australian consumer watchdog levied against Nine last Friday was still bumming investors out here.

Close behind Nine was pharma company Clinuvel. Again there wasn’t much to report from the company last week. However, as my Fool colleague James noted on Monday, Clinuvel’s CEO Philippe Wolgen has been selling some shares lately, which may have gotten investors a little pessimistic on this one.

And finally, ASX tech company Appen was another poor performer. This may have been caused by the general market distaste for ASX tech shares last week. Another thing that might have been at play here was news of a major shareholder selling out of its position in recent weeks, not too long after the investor started buying into Appen. Not exactly confidence-building stuff.

Now with the losers out of the way, let’s check out some of last week’s ASX 200 winners:

Best ASX 200 gainers
% gain for the week

Sydney Airport Holdings Pty Ltd (ASX: SYD)


Resolute Mining Limited (ASX: RSG)


Perenti Global Ltd (ASX: PRN)


A2 Milk Company Ltd (ASX: A2M)


As we discussed earlier, Sydney Airport was the winning ASX 200 share last week. This dramatic boost in valuation came after a consortium of infrastructure investors approached Sydney Airport with an $8.25 per share all-cash takeover offer. The Airport hasn’t announced a final position on the offer, but has noted that its valuation has been ‘temporarily’ affected by the pandemic.

Gold miner Resolute was another winner last week. Gold prices have recently climbed back above US$1,800 per ounce, so this might be why investors were bidding up Resolute, despite no other major news out of the company.

Engineering company Perenti was also in demand. We can probably point to a new contract Perenti has signed with nickel company Panoramic Resources Ltd (ASX: PAN) here. It will be worth around $280 million over four years for Perenti.

And finally, we have what is turning into a bit of a recovery story with A2 Milk. This embattled dairy company was up 10.4% last week to $7.20 per share. Since bottoming out at $5.04 back in May, A2 is now up more than 40%. Saying that, it remains down more than 38% year to date. The catalyst for this latest move appears to be a proposed acquisition of 75% of New Zealand’s Mataura Valley Milk which the company flagged last week.

A wrap of the ASX 200 blue-chip shares

Just before we go, here is a look at how the major ASX 200 blue-chip shares are faring as we commence yet another week in paradise:

ASX 200 company
Last share price
Trailing P/E ratio
Trailing Dividend Yield
52-week high
52-week low

CSL Limited (ASX: CSL)


Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA)


Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC)


Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ASX: ANZ)


National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB)


Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG)


Fortescue Metals Group Limited (ASX: FMG)


BHP Group Ltd (ASX: BHP)


Rio Tinto Limited (ASX: RIO)


Newcrest Mining Ltd (ASX: NCM)


Woodside Petroleum Limited (ASX: WPL)



Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS)


Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW)


Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES)


Coles Group Ltd (ASX: COL)


Transurban Group (ASX: TCL)



Sydney Airport Holdings Pty Ltd (ASX: SYD)



Afterpay Ltd (ASX: APT)



And finally, here is the lay of the land for some leading market indicators:

S&P/ASX 200 Index (XJO) at 7,273.6 points.
All Ordinaries Index (XAO) at 7,545.3 points.

Dow Jones Industrial Average Index (DJX: .DJI) at 34,870 points after rising 1.3% on Friday night (our time).

Bitcoin (CRYPTO: BTC) going for US$33,931 per coin.
Gold (spot) swapping hands for US$1,808 per troy ounce.
Iron ore asking US$214 per tonne.
Crude oil (Brent) trading at US$75.55 per barrel.
Australian dollar buying 74.85 US cents.
10-year Australian Government bonds yielding 1.36% per annum.

That’s all folks. See you next week!

The post ASX 200 Weekly Wrap: COVID wobbles ASX as shares retreat appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

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Motley Fool contributor Sebastian Bowen owns shares of National Australia Bank Limited, Newcrest Mining Limited, and Telstra Corporation Limited. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of and has recommended AFTERPAY T FPO, Appen Ltd, CSL Ltd., POLYNOVO FPO, WiseTech Global, and Xero. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended AFTERPAY T FPO, Appen Ltd, COLESGROUP DEF SET, Challenger Limited, Macquarie Group Limited, Telstra Corporation Limited, Wesfarmers Limited, WiseTech Global, and Xero. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended A2 Milk. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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