AUSTRALIAN STOCKS FADE: Here's what you need to know

Peter Matautia of the Dragons and Luke Lewis of the Sharks have words during the round 18 NRL match between the Cronulla Sharks and the St George Illawarra Dragons. Mark Nolan/Getty Images

The Australian market swung sharply lower in early trade on fears of a deteriorating Greek debt situation, regained some ground in late trade on the back of rising stocks in China but faded again toward the close.

Here’s the scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,473.20 -18.84 -0.34%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,460.40 -17.71 -0.32%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7447 +0.0003 +0.04%

On Wall Street, the S&P 500 closed Friday up 1.2%. On the local market today, seven out of ten sectors were lower, wiping out most of Friday’s 0.38% gain.

Energy stocks were the big losers, shedding about 1.3% across the board. Santos was down 1.84% to $7.48 and LNG 4.63% to 43.71.

The banks were all weaker, led by the ANZ down 1.09% to $31.90. Mining stocks fell with BHP weaker by 0.9% to $26.41, Rio Tinto 1.04% to $51.53 and Fortescue 4.96% to $1.72.

Stocks rising included Qantas, up $3.6% to $3.45, and law firm Slater and Gordon, up 3.25% to $3.50.

The top stories Monday:

1. China’s government is encouraging its firms to buy foreign miners, including in Australia.

2. Chinese stocks were rallying hard for a third consecutive session.

3. Australian medtech companies had a spectacular 2015 financial year in terms of share prices, rising 45.6% against 1.2% for the general market.

4. The fear of failure rates for entrepreneurs around the world, according to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report.

5. APRA says the major banks need to increase capital by 2%. Banking’s prudential regulator released a study comparing the capital position of the big 4 against the capital held by 98 international peers.

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