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The Australian market coasted to a flat but positive close, shrugging off a weaker Wall Street, with resources stocks recovering ground lost earlier in the day.

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,552.80 +5.58 (+0.10%)
  • All Ordinaries: 5,552.80 +5.58 (+0.10%)
  • AUD/USD: 5,516.60 +5.13 (+0.09%)

On the fifth positive trading day in a row, local banks were slightly firmer with Westpac up 0.35% to $34.68. BHP was steady at $28.94.

The top stories on Wednesday:

1. Australia’s inflation rate drops to 1.7% but doesn’t give the RBA a big excuse to cut official rates yet.

2. James Packer’s Crown gets good news from Macau. Its shares went up 7.54% to $13.70 after rising more than 4% the day before.

3. Qantas is heading to a pretax profit of $1 billion this year due in part to lower fuel prices, according to UBS analyst Simon Mitchell. Qantas closed at $2.48, up 4.2%.

4. Deal dissolved. Two private equity firms have pulled out of a $900 million takeover bid for engineer Bradken because of volatility in commodity and financial markets.

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