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Aussie dollar stronger, ASX down for the week

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The S&P/ASX 200 closed 7 points, or 0.1% higher at 6997.80 on Friday, down 3% for the week. Brent crude oil is holding above $US100 a barrel and spot gold is at $US1911.80 an ounce as the Australian dollar strengthens against the US dollar, up 0.5% to around US71.92c. Markets in Japan, Singapore, China, South Korea are higher, New Zealand’s NZX 50 closed up 1.6% and Hong Kong markets are mixed.

US futures are edging lower. Block, the digital-payments firm run by Jack Dorsey, surged as much as 30% in late trading after it reported fourth-quarter revenue that topped projections and gave an unexpectedly positive outlook for 2022. The company swung to a net loss of $US76.8m in the fourth quarter compared with earnings of $US294m a year earlier. The results exclude a boost from Afterpay after the $US29 billion acquisition was completed in January, outside of the reporting period.

Bloomberg is reporting that UBS has named its new Australasia global banking co-heads, with Kelvin Barry and Richard Sleijpen to lead its advisory and deals unit and Nick Alexander to be head of coverage and advisory in the region.

The Aussie dollar is at US71.92c against the US dollar.

Bitcoin is $US38,670.

Gold is $US1911.80 an ounce.

Brent crude oil is sitting around $US100.16 a barrel.

WTI crude oil is at $US96.41 a barrel.

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