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Local focus

Shares and commodities slumped in overnight trade in the face of a rising US dollar. Ongoing pressure on stocks in China echoed through global markets. Futures markets are pointing to a tough day for Asia Pacific investors, although data releases and company reports may change the course of trading.

A move by regulators to restrict Chinese telco Tencent’s rollout of games is the latest blow for share market sentiment. Coming on top of the company’s first fall in profits in a decade the news provided another leg down for China exposed shares.

Commodity markets are alarming. Copper and oil both added to recent downdrafts, and gold is at eighteen month lows. The combination of a stronger US dollar and fears for growth prospects is weighing across the complex.

Australian jobs numbers today are expected to show an increase of 15,000 positions in July. Market reactions are hard to predict given the notorious volatility of the data. Another mixed report card for corporate Australia could also flavour trading. Sonic Healthcare is a stand out, and Telstra and Treasury Wine Estates also beat forecasts. However these results are somewhat offset by misses from Estia, GWA and Downer EDI.

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