AUSTRALIAN STOCKS SLIP: What you need to know

Townsville residents prepare for Cyclone Debbie. Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images

Australian stocks closed weaker.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • ASX 200: 5,746.70 -6.85 -0.12%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,789.20 -6.88 -0.12%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7631 +0.0007 +0.09%

The ASX200 dipped 1% in early trade, falling below the key 5700 point mark before recovering and tracking just under Friday’s close for the afternoon. The ASX200 lost almost 0.8% last week.

On Wall Street the S&P500 closed down 0.1% after after president Donald Trump pulled a bill to overhaul the healthcare system, putting doubt on the administration’s ability to deliver other promised reforms including tax cuts.

On the ASX, weaker commodity prices weighed on the miners. BHP was down 2.9% to $23.55 and Rio Tinto 1.8% to $59.02.

The banks went from negative 1% to treading water. The NAB was up 0.3% to $32.21.

South32 was down 1.8% to $2.67 despite announcing a $US500 million on-market buyback.

The top Stories:

1. What Amazon is that? Nearly half (49%) of retailers say the arrival of the US powerhouse into Australia will have no impact on their business, according to the latest industry survey.

2. Analysing the contents of Australia’s sewerage system. Australians are taking illegal drugs on a scale that challenges the rest of the world.

3. Funtastic moves to de-list from the ASX. The homewares and toys distributor says one of the key reasons leaving the ASX is the low level of liquidity of its shares. Its shares lost 46% to close at $0.008.

4. LiveHire raises $12.5 million. The platform which creates pools of pre-qualified job candidates for companies to dip into when they need to recruit will use the cash to accelerate growth. Its shares jumped as much as 5% before closing at $0.48, up 1%.

5. The Baby Boomers did it. That generation’s entitlement mentality is eroding our standard of living.

6. Qantas has grounded its inflight high-speed wi-fi. The airline, which was to showcase the service to the media today, says it is working on stability issues with the Sky Muster satellite service.

7. Sydney house prices increased 20% in a year. According to latest figures released by CoreLogic earlier today, prices in Australia’s largest and most expensive housing market increased by a further 0.3% last week.

8. Malcolm Turnbull wants the competition watchdog to investigate energy retailers. The government wants the ACCC to investigate whether electricity retailer margins and profitability are in line with their costs and risks.

9. The AFL Women’s grand final is just the start of something big. Moana Hope: “Everywhere I go, people are stopping me to talk about the game and how amazing it is, so it’s pretty bloody awesome.”

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