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

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Australian stocks closed lower.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • ASX200: 6,011.30 -10.50 -0.17%
  • All Ordinaries: 6,096.40 -6.70 -0.11%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7666 +0.0030 +0.39%

The local market hit another flat close, still holding on above the key 6000 mark on the ASX200.

The major banks and the big miners either lost a little or gained a bit.

Westpac was up 0.35% to $31.55 but the ANZ was down 0.5% to $28.50.

Rio Tinto was down 0.5% to $69.78 but BHP was just above water at $27.70.

Top stories:

1. Australian employment surges again. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, employment jumped in November by 61,600 to 12.4 million in seasonally adjusted terms, easily topping forecasts for an increase of 19,000.

2. A Christmas too far. Myer says its Christmas trade so far is significantly below expectations. Myer shares lost 9.6% to close at $0.655.

3. The consumer watchdog. Motorists will pay more for petrol if BP buys Woolworths’ service stations.

4. China lifted interest rates. The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) raised the short-term 7-day reverse repo rate by 5 basis points to 2.50%, ForexLive reported.

5. Australian house price growth will slow further next year. The ANZ says it won’t be anything more sinister than that.

6. UBS cut its growth outlook for the most important part of the economy. A combination of weak wages, flat house price growth and a low household savings rate “just doesn’t add up to anything but a weaker consumer outlook”.

7. What we’re buying online. The 10 best-selling products on Amazon’s first week in Australia.

8. The ultimate gift guide for the gadget lover in your life. If you’re starting the Christmas shopping online, and need something for the tech guru of the family, here’s a good place to start.

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