June 28, 2019 / 7:07 AM / 4 months ago

Mining, energy sectors drag Australian shares down; NZ higher

* Investors await Xi-Trump meeting results

* Miners fall despite higher iron ore price

* Financials see best Q2 in 10 years

June 28 (Reuters) - Australian shares on Friday fell on the quarter’s last day, pulled down by mining and energy stocks, as investors awaited the Saturday meeting in Japan between the U.S. and China presidents.

A mix of reports about the possible outcome of the Donald Trump-Xi Jinping meeting in Osaka on Saturday tempered overall market sentiment and brewed further uncertainty.

The S&P/ASX 200 index slid 0.7% to 6,618.80 at the close of trade.

For the quarter, however, the main index was 7.1% higher.

Investors booked profits on miners, which had big gains on Thursday.

Supported by robust iron ore prices, mining stocks had a huge run near the June 30 close of the Australian financial year. The mining index has added more than 26% in 2019.

Rio Tinto shares dropped 2.4% on the day, while BHP Group finished 1.9% lower, despite Dalian iron ore prices surging to a record on concerns over tightening supply.

The financial sub-index erased earlier gains to end marginally lower. Three of the “Big Four” banks lost in the 0.1%-0.6% range. Only Westpac, up 0.8%, gained.

However, financials rose 9% in the second quarter of 2019, marking its best second quarter in 10 years.

Weaker oil prices hammered energy stocks, which fell 1.7%. Sector heavyweight Woodside Petroleum gave away 2.1%, while smaller peers Santos and Oil Search shed 1.7% and 1.8%, respectively.

New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index finished 0.7% higher at 10,501.10 on the day and up 6.7% in the April-June quarter.

Genesis Energy and Mercury NZ, each gaining over 4%, were the top advancers on the main board.

Reporting by Rushil Dutta and Renju Jose in Bengaluru; Editing by Richard Borsuk

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