Market Wrap: Aus shares close 1.57% lower

Market Reports

Following on from the Easter weekend it has been a dismal start to the week for the local share market, falling into negative territory at the open and continuing to lose momentum throughout the session. In the end, the local share market closed the day 1.57 per cent lower. After a horror week of trade last week for the big four banks, there was still no relief today, with ANZ and Westpac the biggest casualties losing 3.5 and 3 per cent respectively. A sea of red across the healthcare space as well, with CSL falling below the $100 mark, losing 3.5 per cent. 
 
The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 80 points lower to finish at 5,005. 
 
The value of trades was $4.3 billion on volume of 618 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were ANZ Banking Group (ASX:ANZ), Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC) and Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA)
 
On the futures market the SPI is 93 points lower.
 
Company news

St Barbara Limited (ASX:SBM) says ratings agency Standard and Poor’s has lifted the gold miner’s rating from B- to B with a stable outlook. St Barbara has confirmed there is no change to its existing debt arrangements as a consequence of the announcement. Shares in St Barbara closed 4.73 per cent lower at $1.92. 
 
Carsales.com Limited (ASX:CAR) has acquired a controlling shareholding in Chilean automotive classifieds website Chileautos.
 
Medibank Private Limited (ASX:MPL) has appointed Craig Drummond as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer. 
 
APA Group (ASX:APA) has announced it will acquire the remaining 50 per cent of the Diamantina Power Station project that it does not already own.

Best and worst performers

All sectors were in the red, but the one with the least losses was Telcos losing 0.2 per cent to close at 1,933. The worst performing sector was Healthcare, losing 2.6 per cent to close at 18,926 points.
 
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Aconex, rising 4.3 per cent to close at $6.30. Shares in Newscorp and Sims Metal Management also closed higher.
 
The worst performing stock was Broadspectrum, dropping 6.64 per cent to close at $1.20. Shares in Bellamy’s and Mineral Resources also closed lower. 
 
Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at $US1,218 an ounce.
Light crude is $0.07 lower at $US39.39 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7555.