Global gloom drives Aussie mar­ket down

Townsville Bulletin - - BUSINESS DAILY -

AUS­TRALIAN shares are on track to lose all their gains for the week with lo­cal stocks sharply lower at lunchtime un­der the weight of weak US mar­kets, a global bond sell­down and geopo­lit­i­cal wor­ries over North Korea.

All sec­tors of the ASX plunged into the red from the open of trad­ing yes­ter­day and the bench­mark S& P/ ASX200 stock in­dex was down 1.4 per cent at noon AEST.

The weak morn­ing fol­lows a drop in US stocks overnight, af­ter dis­ap­point­ing pri­vate labour mar­ket data sig­nalled pos­si­ble weak­ness in of­fi­cial non- farm pay­roll fig­ures due out last night.

Glob­ally bonds have come un­der pres­sure af­ter the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank’s lat­est min­utes in­di­cated it may wind back its bond- buy­ing pro­gram, with pes­simism flow­ing on to eq­ui­ties, while ris­ing ten­sions in the Korean penin­sula are pro­vid­ing ad­di­tional pres­sure.

In the lo­cal mar­ket, losses have been led by en­ergy and health­care stocks. En­ergy shares Wood­side Petroleum and San­tos were down by more than 2 per cent, with oil prices re­main­ing weak de­spite a slight uptick overnight. The health sec­tor slipped as shares in over­seas- ex­posed Cochlear and CSL shed about 2 per cent.

Min­ing gi­ants Rio Tinto and BHP Bil­li­ton were also trad­ing slightly lower fol­low­ing a drop in the iron ore price and the big four banks were down more than 1 per cent.

Coca Cola- Amatil shares were down more than 5 per cent, con­tin­u­ing Thurs­day’s de­cline af­ter news broke that the com­pany lost a con­tract with Domino’s pizza chain and had also failed to get its lat­est no- sugar of­fer­ing on the shelves of Wool­worths.

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