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Monday 17

December, 2018 6:57 AM



Heavy commodity losses drag on Aust market

Heavy commodity losses drag on Aust market

The Australian share market has been weighed down by mining and energy stocks on Monday.

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By AAP 26.11.2018 05:21 PM

The Australian share market suffered broad-based losses but it was the commodity-related stocks bleeding red which was the biggest drag on the indices.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 44.6 points, or 0.78 per cent, at 5671.6 on Monday, while the broader All Ordinaries was down 0.74 per cent.

Energy and materials stocks suffered heavy losses after iron ore prices fell four per cent and oil has now plummeted more than 25 per cent in the last month-and-a-half, CommSec chief market analyst Steven Daghlian said.

"Around three quarters to 80 per cent of the market's losses today are just from those two sectors," he said.

"When that happens, it's hard to shake off."

The market will continue to be exposed to volatility until the US and China leaders meet at the G20 summit in Argentina on Friday when investors are eagerly awaiting positive dialogue to ease trade tensions, Mr Daghlian told AAP.

Market giants BHP and Rio Tinto both fell further throughout the day, down 3.6 per cent to $30.43 and 3.6 per cent to $74.05 respectively, while BlueScope and Fortescue lost 5.8 and four per cent.

Gold miner Newcrest lifted 0.5 per cent to $21.32, Saracen gained 1.2 per cent, while Evolution lost 0.3 per cent.

A near eight per cent drop in the oil price - the seventh consecutive weekly loss - caused US stocks to suffer their biggest Thanksgiving-week drop since 2011.

Oil Search, Santos, and Origin were down between 3.9 and 4.7 per cent, while Woodside lost 2.3 per cent to $31.37.

Westpac was the only one of the big four lenders to end the day in negative territory, down 0.4 per cent to $25.95, despite a sector-wide loss of 0.2 per cent.

NAB had the strongest gains of the four, up 0.5 per cent to $24.61, while Macquarie Group lost 0.9 per cent to $113.46.

The health care sector fell more than one per cent, dragged down by benchmark CSL which lost 1.4 per cent to $179.70.

Tech, consumer staples, and telco stocks were also all lower.

Sydney saw a jump in auction activity but the nation's property market is still in a rut, with fewer capital city homes put under the hammer last week and the national clearance rate lagging near a six-year low.

The Australian dollar found support as Asian markets steadied on hopes for progress on China-US tariffs at the anxiously awaited summit meeting.

The Aussie was buying 72.47 US cents at 1630 AEDT compared to 72.49 on Friday.

ON THE ASX:

* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index closed down 44.6 points, or 0.78 per cent, at 5671.6

* The All Ordinaries closed down 43.1 points, or 0.74 per cent, at 5750.3

* At 1630 AEDT, the SPI200 futures index was down 26 points, or 0.46 per cent, at 5677.0

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1630 AEDT:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 72.47 US cents, from 72.49 US cents cents on Friday

* 82.08 Japanese yen, from 81.82

* 63.89 euro cents, from 63.50

* 56.55 British pence, from 56.28

* 106.72 NZ cents, from 106.42

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 1630 AEDT was $US1,225.09 per fine ounce, down from $US1,228.07 on Friday.

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