Markets: Stocks to watch at the open

Construction bellwether stock Brickworks reports this morning, while REITs see relief from the Fed.

Brickworks Limited

If investors are keen to monitor how the Australian market is tracking they would do well to think of Brickworks as a bellwether stock of sorts.

The company’s results – which are due this morning – will give an insight into how building material suppliers are faring in the current economic climate.

Low interest rates have encouraged a recovery in the domestic housing market, but at this stage it has primarily been focused on existing houses.

Brickworks' assessment of the last six months and of the year ahead will be a valuable gauge into how construction is actually progressing.

Real Estate Infrastructure Trusts and Utilities

Confirmation from Ben Bernanke that the current bond buying program will stay in place sent the yield on US 10-year Treasuries down 0.15 per cent to close at 2.69 per cent. A lower and falling long term bond yield bodes well for the property and utility sectors, which are sensitive to interest rates.

Falling long term yields will be a welcome relief for domestic real estate infrastructure trusts. he sector has fallen 10 per cent since its May highs, coinciding with a rise in long-term bond yields.

Action on the US-based S&P 500 saw REITs gain an average of 3.44 per cent overnight. Utilities also fared well, putting on 3 per cent.