AUSTRALIAN STOCKS SLIP AGAIN: What you need to know

Mark Tipple / Barcroft Media / Getty Images

Australian shares closed lower.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,408.50 -21.82 -0.40%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,489.10 -24.75 -0.45%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7616 +0.0007 +0.09%

The local market recovered some of its earlier losses to regain, by a handful of points, the ASX200 5400 mark.

Energy and healthcare stocks led the slide.

Woodside Petroleum was down 1% to close at $28.99 and Santos 2.8% to $3.73.

Ramsay Health dropped more than 4.5% to close at $71.40, Cochlear 4.25% to $129.36 and CSL 2.4% to $102.53.

The banks were mixed again, with Westpac up 0.46% to $30.57 and the Commonwealth down 0.3% to $74.67.

The top stories:

1. The Commonwealth Bank just used blockchain in a world first global transaction. Blockchain, the technology behind digital currency bitcoin and now being used to simplify secure financial transactions, has been applied for the first time in a deal facilitated by an Australian bank to sell cotton to China.

2. Mortgage insurer Genworth goes to a Chinese property group. The $US2.7 billion ($A3.5 billion) sale of US-based mortgage insurance group Genworth Financial to family-owned China Oceanwide Holdings is not expected to have a major impact on the local Australian business. Local Genworth Mortgage shares were up 2.7% to close at $3.01.

3. Medibank Private has $170 million to invest. Medibank Private just seeded a new fund which excludes investment in “tobacco and controversial weapons”.

4. Vale Leslie Nassar. The Australian technology and social media great, who created ABC TV’s live Twitter feed for Q&A, was killed in a hit-and-run drunk driver incident in the USA on the weekend. He was 43.

5. HCF’s healthtech accelerator is looking for more startups. HCF Catalyst is looking for new ideas for the sector, announcing the return of the program for 2016.

6. The property market. Capital city auction clearance rates now sit at the highest level seen since early 2015.

7. A question of debt. Cost blowouts in government infrastructure projects are bigger than the budget deficit.

8. Fast food from the sky. Domino’s Pizza has revealed how it will stop people stealing their delivery drones.

9. Couples in China are getting divorced so they can buy more houses. In September, Chinese new home prices rose by 2.1%, extending the gains over the past year to 11.2%

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