It’s been a disappointing end to the session for the Australian share market. After opening in the red the local bourse failed to resurface throughout the day and ended up closing 0.64 per cent lower. The big four banks were the biggest casualties today with the likes of Westpac losing 2.6 per cent and CBA shedding close to 2 per cent. Energy stocks also closed lower after a fall in the price of oil overnight.
The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 36 points down to finish at 5,508.
The value of trades was $4.9 billion on volume of 653 million shares at the close of trade. The top three stocks by value were Telstra Corporation Limited (ASX:TLS), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX:CBA), Westpac Banking Corporation (ASX:WBC).
On the futures market the SPI is 24 points down.
Alcoa Inc (ASX:AAI) has announced it plans to undertake a reverse stock split of Alcoa’s common stock at a ratio of 1 for 3 and a proportionate reduction in the number of shares in its common stock. The company says the reverse stock split may improve liquidity and facilitate trading of the stock. Alcoa will hold a special shareholders meeting on 5 October 2016 to seek shareholder approval. Shares in Aloca last traded at $13.10.
Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX:TLS) has announced its full-year profit went up 36.6% to $5.8 billion.
Nick Scali Ltd (ASX:NCK) says its net profit after tax soared by 53% to $26.2 million for the year ended 30 June 2016.
DuluxGroup (ASX:DLX) says it will acquire the assets of a small UK-based paints business called Craig & Rose.
Best and worst performers
The best performing sector was Discretionaries adding 1.21 per cent to close at 2,213. The worst performing sector was Financials excluding REITs, losing 1.4 per cent to close at 6,702 points.
The best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Mesoblast, rising 14.23 per cent to close at $1.45. Shares in Magellan and Automotive Holdings also closed higher.
The worst performing stock was St Barbara, dropping 6.19 per cent to close at $3.03. Shares in Evolution Mining and Independence Group also closed lower.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at $US1,344 an ounce.
Light crude is $1.06 lower at $US41.71 a barrel.
The Australian dollar is buying $US0.7710.