SHARES

News is back on Facebook so what's next for the Australian share market?

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Over the past few decades, major Australian media companies have slowly declined as many more individuals take to the internet and social media for their daily news. The Australian government must be applauded for the recent agreements with both Google and Facebook, which has forced them to negotiate and pay for content from Australian media companies.

Australia used to have several very strong major media companies that we all enjoyed owning shares in, however, this has changed dramatically over the last decade as several household names now no longer trade on the stock exchange. While the recent agreement with Facebook is good news, you have to question whether it is not only too late to save our local industry but to see it grow once again.

In my opinion, Australians need to have a very strong independent media presence rather than just being part of a global newsfeed that seeks to censor what we see, read and hear.

facebook news ban share market

Australia has many great journalists and I think the government needs to go further to ensure the independence that Australians value by ensuring media companies supply a large percentage of locally produced content. This would not only protect our media industry and jobs for those in the industry, but it would also protect our way of life.

Facebook and other social media companies have had their way for far too long, as they have been able to dictate to and manipulate what information we consume. As such, they have created mass division in the US, which has played out on TV screens around the world over the last six months.

So, once again, I congratulate the government for taking these first steps, although I hope these are only the first steps and that there is more to come.

Best and worst performing sectors this week

Energy is the best performing sector up more than 5% followed by Materials up more than 4%, while Financials is up more than 1%. The worst performing sectors include Information Technology up more than 7% followed by Communication Services and Consumer Discretionary, which is down more than 4 and 3% respectively.

The best performers in the ASX/S&P top 100 stocks include IDP Education up more than 13% followed by Lend Lease Group up more than 12% and Nine Entertainment Co up more than 11%. The worst performers include Appen down more than 21%, The a2 Milk Company down more than 15% and SEEK Limited down more than 14%.

What's next for the Australian share market

The Australian stock market has continued its sideways movement this week up one day and down the next, highlighting the erratic nature our market has been in since we welcomed in 2021. Despite this, I believe the current unpredictability will ease and that the All Ordinaries Index will start to move in an upward direction overall in the next month and possibly longer.

I am confident we will see the market trade higher into March to not only achieve a new all-time high but in doing so trade above 7400 points. That said, any move up now will be short lived as the next low for the Australian stock market will occur in late April or May. As I have previously communicated, opportunities are likely to come from sectors such as Energy, Materials and Financials.

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Dale Gillham is chief analyst for Wealth Within (AFSL 226347). He has an Advanced Diploma and Diploma of Share Trading and Investment and more than 25 years' experience in the financial services industry.
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