Feb 7 Australian shares were slightly lower on
Tuesday, in line with Wall Street, as gains in gold and
industrial stocks offset losses in the financial and energy
The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.4 percent, or 24.87
points to 5,590.70 by 0119 GMT.
Bank stocks suffered the most in the region taking their cue
from the U.S. financial sector, with the financial benchmark
declining as much as 1.3 percent, to its lowest in
nearly two months.
"There is a correlation between what is happening in the
U.S. banks overnight and the Aussie banks," says Chris Weston,
an institutional dealer at IG Markets.
The S&P 500 financial index closed 0.4 percent lower
The "Big Four" banks fell 0.8 to 1.2 percent, while
Macquarie Group Ltd shed 2.8 percent, after it
reaffirmed flat full-year net profit because of a reduced
contribution from its capital markets business.
Energy shares slipped after global oil prices fell
as news of ample U.S. supplies offset the effect of OPEC output
The benchmark fell as much as 1.2 percent, posting
its lowest in nearly 7 weeks.
Woodside Petroleum Ltd, Origin Energy Ltd
and Santos Ltd fell 0.5 to 1 percent.
Meanwhile, material index rose 0.3 percent, with
gold miners leading the gainers after the yellow metal jumped 1
percent to its highest in nearly three months.
The gold index climbed 4 percent, with Newcrest
Mining Ltd, Northern Star Resources Ltd and
Evolution Mining Ltd gaining 3.5 to 4.9 percent.
The industrial sector recorded gains after Transurban Group
, reported a 42 percent jump in first-half profit and
raised its full-year dividend guidance.
Shares of the toll road developer rose to their highest in
nearly four months.
New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index fell as
much as 0.4 percent, recording its biggest intra-day percentage
fall in a week.
Industrials and healthcare stocks led the losses, with
Auckland International Airport Ltd losing 1.4 percent,
while Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corp Ltd fell 1.6
For more individual stocks activity click on
(Reporting by Krishna V Kurup in Bengaluru; Additional
reporting by Sandhya Sampath; Editing by Eric Meijer)