STOCKS FALL: Here's what you need to know

Photo: Phil Walter/Getty Images

The Australian market closed weaker, following Wall Street and big mining stocks down.

Here’s the scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,946.60 -13.67 (-0.23%)
  • All Ordinaries: 5,916.20 -11.86 (-0.20%)
  • AUD/USD: 0.7579 -0.0010 (-0.13%)

In the US, the S&P 500 index lost 0.5% overnight.

On the local market, six out of ten sectors closed lower. The banks lost ground, led by the ANZ at $36.32, down 1.14%. BHP lost 1.02% to $29.12 and Rio Tinto 0.62% to $54.96.

The consumer staples sector shed more than 1%, with Woolworths slipping 1.48% to $29.21 and Wesfarmers 0.95% to $43.80.

The top stories Tuesday:

1. Iron ore fallout. Workers at Andrew Forrest’s Fortescue Metals have lost their industry-leading rosters as the iron ore miner slashes further, trying to match costs to falling iron ore prices. Shareholders like the news. Fortescue closed up 3.38% to $1.835 in a falling market. But the state of WA was put on a negative credit watch.

2. Australian business activity is coming back. The NAB business survey for March brings some positive news.

3. Interest rates. The San Francisco Fed President is giving out T-Shirts to explain what drives US interest rates.

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