Aussie Sharemarket Lower At Midday
May 8th, 2012
AUSTRALIAN shares were lower at noon with the local market reacting to European uncertainty and the abandonment of a company tax cut in the federal budget.
At 12.01am AEST today, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 37.3 points, or 0.86 per cent, at 4277 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index had fallen 39.9 points, or 0.91 per cent, to 4336 points.
On the ASX 24, the June share price index futures contract was 31 points lower at 4267 points, with 18,670 contracts traded.
Australian Stock Report head of research Geoff Saffer said the local market was still reacting to uncertainty in Europe and to the abandonment of an expected company tax cut in yesterday's Federal Budget.
"The main driver of today's loss is along the same theme as it has been all this week which is the political uncertainty in Europe leaving question marks over whether they will be able to achieve austerity measures," he said.
Turmoil in the eurozone and a clutch of disappointing earnings reports have sent US markets tumbling.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gave up almost 200 points at one stage during the session, but a late buying rally reversed the course to minimise the day's loss.
The Dow closed off 76.44 points (0.59 per cent) at 12,932.09, while the broader S&P 500 fell 5.86 (0.43 per cent) to 1,363.72.
European stockmarkets plummeted and the euro fell against the US dollar, with sentiment dominated by uncertainty in the eurozone after weekend elections in France and Greece.
In London, the FTSE 100 index ended the day with a loss of 1.78 per cent at 5554.55 points, after trading resumed following a long holiday weekend.
Falls in gold prices saw Newcrest Mining shares drop 90 cents, or 3.58 per cent, to $24.22.
The price of gold in Sydney opened at $US1605.05 per fine ounce, down $US26.06, from $US1631.11 per fine ounce at yesterday's close.
The mining giants were all lower.
BHP Billiton was down 34 cents to $34.34, Rio Tinto was 86 cents lower at $61.40 and Fortescue Metals was one cent cents lower at $5.34.
Shares in the four major banks were also all down.
ANZ was cents nine cents lower at $23.02, National Australia Bank was down nine cents to $24.54, Westpac lost two cents to $22.81 and Commonwealth Bank was down 49 cents to $51.59.
National turnover was 893 million securities worth $2.005 billion, with 181 stocks up, 639 down and 338 unchanged.