AUSTRALIAN STOCKS CLOSE THE WEEK AHEAD: Here's what you need to know

Australia’s Jack Miller of Australia during the MotoGp of Germany. Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images

Australia stocks closed the session down but ended the week higher.

The scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,498.20 -14.20 -0.26%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,574.30 -14.37 -0.26%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7486 -0.0007 -0.09%

The ASX 200 gained 1.2% this week but lost ground today for only the second time in 12 trading days. The index, now hovering just below 5500 points, is up 5% this month.

Today, a weak showing on Wall Street, where the S&P 500 closed down 0.4%, subdued local trading.

The banks were mixed with Commonwealth closing 0.14% higher at $77.14 but the NAB dropping 0.69% to $26.06.

BHP was up 0.2% to $19.30 but Rio Tinto was 0.3% weaker at $48.35. A 2.2% slide in oil prices sent Woodside Petroleum down 1% to close at $27.30.

Santos, which today posted an 8% rise in second quarter production and a 25% increase in sales, dropped 1.4% to $4.83.

The top stories Friday:

1. Flushed away. Tough competition in the toilet paper business will cut profits at Asaleo Care by 15%. Its shares lost almost 30% to close at $1.505.

2. Three senior executives go at the NAB. CEOAndrew Thorburn has made major changes to his executive team, cementing his plans to focus more on Australia and New Zealand.

3. Big deals. Catch of the Day has been named Australia’s favourite online retailer.

4. What employers are looking for. The most sought-after jobs and skills in Australia.

5. The housing game. There’s a wild contradiction in how Australians think about housing prices.

6. Thinking ahead. The best places to retire in the world in 2016.

7. PODCAST: Housing prices, stock market highs, why traders buy the dip and more.

8. Pokémon GO. The digital moster hunting game has finally launched in Japan and Nintendo shares are rallying again. Also read: There’s a major change in Pokémon GO after you hit level 20.

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