AUSTRALIAN STOCKS GO NOWHERE: Here's what you need to know

A strongman from The Great Moscow Circus. Mike Clarke/AFP/Getty Images

Australian shares closed lower marginally lower.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • ASX 200: 5,735.10 -9.10 -0.16%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,786.80 -7.74 -0.13%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7922 -0.0045 -0.56%

The local market coasted to a weak close for a second session in a row.

A key drag on the market was Rio Tinto, which lost 2.49% to close at $64.20, after the big miner Rio posted below expected underlying earnings for the half year of $US3.94 billion ($A4.94 billion). The share price was dragged down despite a decision to give back $US3 billion ($A3.7 billion) to shareholders.

Woodside Petroleum was down 1.2% to $29.11 and Fortescue Metals 1.39% to $5.67.

Among the banks, the Commonwealth was down 0.3% to $83.97. AMP shed 0.9% to close at $5.41.

Flight Centre was 3.4% higher at $45.94 after announcing the acquisition of a travel agency in Canada, Voyages Laurier du Vallon.

Top stories:

1. Amazon is coming. The company said the launch of its retail offering would involve “thousands of new jobs” and “millions of dollars of investment” through the opening of a fulfilment centre at Dandenong South in Victoria. Also read: Amazon’s first country manager for Australia is coming from Germany.

2. Suspicious cash deposits of $624.7 million. The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has been taken to the Federal Court, with authorities claiming it breached the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act. Also read: How millions in cash was deposited and then disappeared offshore.

3. James Packer rejoins the board of Crown Resorts. The company said the appointment of Packer as a director of Crown has become effective today following “the receipt of all necessary consents and approvals”. Crown shares were up 0.6% to $12.77.

4. The trade surplus just missed by a mile. According to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the surplus fell to $856 million in seasonally adjusted terms, missing expectations for a smaller decline to $1.8 billion.

5. Kathmandu says sales are picking up again. It expects sales for the year to July to be up 4.6% to $NZ445.3 million with same store sales up 5.5%. Its shares were steady at $2.10.

6. Suncorp lifts profit but sees a cooling housing market ahead. “We anticipate a cooling of house price growth nationally.” Its shares dropped 6.4% to close at $13.57.

7. The 10 biggest raises by Australian startups. Venture capital firm Right Click Capital has compiled the list of the 10 highest capital raises by Australian startups in 2017 for Business Insider.

8. The aviation terrorism threat is contained. Australian airports resume normal service.

9. Australian cricket has finally reached a pay deal with the players. The long-running pay dispute between Cricket Australian and the players association is over.

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