Share market weighed down by energy stocks and China data

It has been another day of losses on the Australian share market, with energy and mining stocks hit by a fall in oil prices and some disappointing data from China.

The All Ordinaries Index lost 33 points to 5,235 and the ASX 200 fell by 0.6 per cent to 5,203.

Stocks slipped at the open then fell to the day's lows midway through the session, after Customs figures showed China's imports declined for the 11th month in a row in September, down a steeper than expected 17.7 per cent.

Exports also fell, but the decline was limited by official moves to devalue the yuan.

Energy stocks again posted the biggest losses after a fall in oil prices. LNG Limited dropped 9.6 per cent to $1.65 and Whitehaven Coal fell by 6.4 per cent to 95 cents.

Mining shares also took a beating. Fortescue Metals fared the worst, plunging 8.8 per cent to $2.19.

Elsewhere, Telstra shares lost 0.9 per cent as the telco held its annual general meeting.

The big four banks were mixed ? ANZ was the only one to rise, adding 0.6 per cent to $28.51.

The dollar is lower against the greenback after the release of the Chinese trade data. Around 6:00pm (AEDT) it was buying 73.1 US cents, 64.3 euro cents, 87.6 Japanese yen and 47.7 British pence.

Spot gold was lower at $US1,155 an ounce.

Oil prices were also down, with West Texas crude oil falling to $US47.04 a barrel and Tapis crude in Singapore also lower at $US51.62 a barrel.

Meanwhile a key business survey found the mood among Australia's business leaders has improved since the uncertainty around the Liberal leadership was resolved.

NAB's latest monthly business survey shows confidence jumped in September, while conditions for businesses remained steady at an above average rate.

It is the first reading of business confidence since Malcolm Turnbull became Prime Minister.

Source: ABC News

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