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ASX dips as oil slump saps energy stocks

9News.com.au logo9News.com.au 19/12/2018 3:00:00 AAP

The Australian share market has opened lower after an overnight oil price slump, with energy stocks deep in the red and the healthcare sector also dragging. © AAP ImagesThe Australian share market has opened lower after an overnight oil price slump, with energy stocks deep in the red and the healthcare sector also dragging. Australian shares have edged lower in early trade as an overnight oil price slump sends energy stocks plummeting.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 10.4 points, or 0.19 per cent, to 5,579.2 at 1030 AEDT on Wednesday, while the broader All Ordinaries fell 12.2 points, or 0.22 per cent to 5,649.6.

Opening losses would have been greater for the local bourse were it not for a buoyant performance by the big banks, with healthcare, tech, and telco stocks sinking deep into the red following a choppy overnight session on Wall Street.

The energy sector took the biggest hit early on, following a more than five per cent drop in oil prices.

Fuel giant Caltex lost another 2.97 per cent to $24.81 in early trade on the back of a subdued earings forecast the previous session, while Origin Energy fell 3.58 per cent to $6.605.

Oil Search, Santos, Beach Energy and Woodside were down by between 1.8 and 3.21 per cent each, while coal miner Whitehaven took a 1.81 per cent hit to $4.35.

Utilities stocks were also down, with APA Group losing 1.21 per cent to $8.555, and AGL falling 1.26 per cent to $19.57.

The resources sector was flat with solid gains for the gold miners cancelling out dips for BHP, Rio Tinto, South32, Bluescope, and Fortescue Metals.

OceanaGold was up by 7.7 per cent to $4.46 after precious metal prices firmed amid wider economic uncertainty.

Healthcare stocks were subdued after a 0.99 per cent drop for biotech giant CSL, as well as losses for Cochlear and Ramsay Health Care.

For the financials, Commonwealth banks led the gains with a 1.66 per cent rise to $69.74.

Westpac added 0.95 per cent to $24.54, ANZ rose 1.01 per cent to $23.93, and NAB jumped 0.95 per cent to $23.35 despite facing a huge first strike at its annual general meeting in Melbourne.

GrainCorp shares are down 2.42 per cent to $8.87 after asking Long-Term Asset Partners to put forward a more certain proposal than the $2.38 billion all-cash takeover it currently has on the table.

The Aussie has edged higher, buying 71.87 US cents, though it is still down from 71.90 US cents on Tuesday.

19. joulukuuta 2018 5:00:00 Categories: 9News.com.au The Washington Post

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