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AUSTRALIAN STOCKS CRUSHED THIS WEEK: What you need to know

Fabio Borini of Sunderland after sliding into a hoarding on the slippery pitch during the Premier League match against Watford. Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

The Australian market closed with more losses.

Here’s today’s scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 4,765.30 -55.78 -1.16%
  • All Ordinaries: 4,816.60 -54.26 -1.11%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7103 -0.0005 -0.07%

The ASX 200 fell through the key 4800 point level and is now down 4.2% this week alone and 10% since the start of 2016.

Other global markets are doing worse, including Japan which today lost 4% and is down around 11% just this week alone.

The Australian banks were again victims of the global rout in the banking sector, a wave of fear which started in Europe over concerns about Deutsche Bank.

Overnight the S&P 500 was down 1.2% and in Europe the EuroSTOXX banks sector lost 6.3%.

On the local market, eight out of ten sectors were lower led by financial stocks. Westpac lost 2.5% to $28.06 and the ANZ 2.3% to $22.18.

Rio Tinto dropped as much as 3% after posting a loss of $US866 million for the half year to December. It later recovered some ground and closed 1.27% weaker at $40.47.

Miners improved from their earlier lows but still ended the day lower. BHP closed down almost 1% to $15.09 and Fortescue Metals 4.7% to $1.62.

The top stories Friday:

1. Smashing its sales targets. David Jones is delivering sales growth to its South African parent company Woolworths Holdings well ahead of expectations.

2. Better profits. BlueScope, which is cutting jobs and freezing wages because of a global oversupply of steel, now expects half year earnings to be about 27% better than first thought. Bluescope shares surged 14% to clsoe at $5.00.

3. More customers. Optus added 12,000 new mobile customers and increased profit 9.1% to $227 million in the December quarter.

4. Tourist boom. Visitor numbers for Australia are soaring, jumping 2.2% in seasonally adjusted terms in December 2015, according to new Australian Bureau of Statistics numbers released today.

5. The big ticket. Off the back of an incredible 2015, raising $10 million, Australian online marketplace platform Marketplacer will launch a new ticketing platform in 2016 as well as expanding into the UK.

6. Those pay rises that didn’t happen. Stalling wages might suck, but Glenn Stevens points out they’re helping keep people in jobs.

7. It will be here before you known it. MARK TEXTOR on the rise and rise of tactical voting, an emerging force in this year’s federal election.

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