AUSTRALIAN STOCKS DIVE AGAIN: Here's what you need to know

Will Hams of the Bombers is challenged by Martin Gleeson during an Essendon Bombers AFL training session in Melbourne. Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

Australia stocks fell hard.

Here’s the scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 4,909.40 -78.04 -1.56%
  • All Ordinaries: 4,964.10 -77.54 -1.54%
  • AUD/USD: 0.6935 -0.0022 -0.32%

The market was down for the ninth time in ten sessions, falling 7.3% so far in 2016, wiping $118 billion in value from stocks.

Today all sectors were in the red, with the major banks dropping and big miners leading the falls.

At one stage the ASX 200 was down more than 2% before regaining some lost ground. Local investors followed Wall Street overnight where the S&P 500 shed 2.5% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq dropped 3.4%.

The NAB closed down 2% to $27.11. AMP lost almost 3% to $5.31.

BHP added 0.75% to $14.88 after Citi upgraded the miner to a BUY. Rio Tinto dropped 1.7% to $38.85. Energy stocks lost 2.7% across the board with Santos shedding 8% to $2.86.

The top stories Thursday:

1. Bunnings exported to the UK. Wesfarmers is closing in on Homebase, the British home improvement retailer and garden centre, with a £340 million ($704 million) bid. Wesfarmers shares closed down 1.3% to $39.40.

2. Growth this year. The top stock picks in Credit Suisse’s 2016 Australian investment strategy.

3. More good news on jobs. Australia’s labour market surprised again in December, topping expectations for the third month in succession.

4. This is what Millennials want from a job. Much the same as everyone else.

5. Meeting of creditors. Dick Smith’s fate won’t be known for another six months.

6. The next gig. One of the 5 hottest jobs in Australia in 2016 is forklift driver and it’s all to do with online retailing.

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