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

Photo: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

The ASX200 closed back below the 6,000 mark, reversing yesterday’s gains as mining and financial stocks finished lower.

Today’s scoreboard:

ASX200: 5,969.90 -41.22 (-0.69%)
All Ordinaries: 6,057.20 -38.85 (-0.64%)
AUD/USD: 0.7589 +0.0018 (+0.24%)

The falls followed a relatively weak global lead, led by a selloff in big US tech companies on the NASDAQ.

The big banks opened the session sharply lower following the announcement of a banking Royal Commission.

Falls were led by Commonwealth Bank, which finished the session around 1.9% lower while other banks rallied in afternoon trade as the market assessed the outlook for the sector.

Bendigo & Adelaide Bank was the best performer, closing 2% higher as the ASX financials index finished down 0.77% on the day.

Falls on the broader index were led by stocks in the resources and materials sectors, with Rio and BHP both closing more than 1% lower while BHP offshoot South 32 lost 2%.

Pure-play iron ore miner Fortescue finished 0.65% lower as it announced a new CEO.

Among other notable moves, department store Myer closed up by another 5% after posting a 4% gain yesterday as the stock rallies off its November lows.

Top stories:

1. It’s a Royal Commission: The big banks asked for an inquiry and they got a Royal Commission instead, in what was a surprise policy reversal by the Turnbull Government.

2. Bitcoin bubble: As Bitcoin’s value skyrockets, its price is closely correlated with the number of people searching for whether or not it’s an asset bubble.

3. The cryptocurrency landscape: What is the future of money? Business Insider has obtained a fascinating expert report from ABC Bullion economist Jordan Eliseo on all things Bitcoin.

4. The Treasurer speaks: Business Insider’s Sarah Kimmorley sat down with Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison this afternoon to discuss fintech and the Royal Commission.

5. Aussie businesses are ready to spend: Q3 capital expenditures figures from the ABS revealed an increasingly positive outlook for domestic business investment.

6. Amazon failure to launch: The internet giant is having some technical difficulties, and the launch of Australian operations could be postponed until next year.

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