Headline indices of the Australian financial market closed marginally down after a seesaw trade on Friday, 15 March 2019, as risk sentiments subdued on fresh concerns about global trade and the Chinese economy. News that a meeting to end the trade war with China won’t happen this month had weighed on sentiment. At closing bell, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index fell 4.42 points, or 0.07%, at 6,175.17 points, while the broader All Ordinaries dropped 1.74 points, or 0.03%, at 6,265.06.
Mining stocks were lower, after copper prices dropped overnight as industrial output in top metals consumer China fell to a 17-year low. BHP was down 1.8%, Fortescue Metals down 1.2% and Rio Tinto down 0.13%.
Financial stocks extended losses, with the fall exacerbated by Morgan Stanley downgrading its rating on Australia and New Zealand Banking to underweight from equal-weight.
Shares of three of the big four lenders declined between 0.4% and 1.6%, but National Australia Bank was slightly higher.
CURRENCY: The Australian dollar was up against the U. S. dollar on Friday. The Aussie dollar was quoted at 70.84 US cents, from 70.62 US cents on Thursday.
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