ASX closes 1% lower to lowest point in eight weeks

Market Reports

by Peter Milios

Australia's stock market experienced its most significant declines in one and two consecutive days over a three-week period, reaching the lowest level in eight weeks. Simultaneously, the Australian dollar reached a six-month low as a result of disappointing economic growth in China and concerns about the US debt ceiling.

The financials and materials sectors are underperforming.

At the closing bell, the S&P/ASX 200 was 1.05 per cent lower at 7,138.20.


The Dow Jones futures are pointing to a fall of 61 points.
The S&P 500 futures are pointing to a rise of 17.5 points.
The Nasdaq futures are pointing to a rise of 187.25 points.
The SPI futures are pointing to a fall of 77 points when the market next opens.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector was S&P/ASX 200 Information Technology, up 2.42 per cent. The worst-performing sector was S&P/ASX 200 Financials, down 1.88 per cent.

The best-performing large cap was Nextdc (ASX:NXT), closing 4.37 per cent higher at $12.19. It was followed by shares in Infratil (ASX:IFT) and TechnologyOne (ASX:TNE).

The worst-performing large cap was Treasury Wine Estates (ASX:TWE), closing 7.84 per cent lower at $11.76. It was followed by shares in Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC) and Evolution Energy (ASX:EVN)

Asian markets

Japan's Nikkei has lost 0.32 per cent.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng has lost 2.48 per cent.
China's Shanghai Composite has lost 1.12 per cent.

Company news

Mamba Exploration (ASX:M24) has announced that drilling at their Hyden REE project has intersected wide & shallow mineralisation of TREO. MD Mike Dunbar commented, “the mineralisation is very widespread, but it is also remarkably consistent within the mineralised intervals.” Shares closed 4.76 per cent higher at 11 cents.

European Metals (ASX:EMH, AIM:EMH, OTCQX: EMHXY, ERPNF and EMHLF) announces that their testwork realises continued outstanding lithium recoveries. Executive Chairman Keith Coughlan said: “We look forward to further results of the ongoing optimisation work as part of the DFS.” Shares closed flat at 63 cents.

Argent Minerals (ASX:ARD) announced that their data review highlights bonanza grades at their Ringville Project in Tasmania. MD Mr Kastellorizos commented: “The historical diamond drilling sulphide intersections clearly demonstrate thick mineralised extensions over the Salmons Vein Deposit.” Shares closed 11 per cent higher at 1 cent.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1,974.50 an ounce.
Iron ore is 4.9 per cent lower at US$97.35 a tonne.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a 2 per cent fall.
Light crude is trading $0.42 lower at US$73.92 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 65.33 US cents.

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