Australian Stock Market Report – Midday 4-3-13
Despite a slightly stronger start to the session for the 2nd day running (something which hasn't happened in 4 weeks), the All Ordinaries Index (XAO) is 0.2 per cent or 8.6 pts lower to 4986.9. Shares slumped by 2.7 per cent in March, making it the worst month of trade since May 2012.
Commodity prices were mostly lower overnight which is having an adverse effect on the mining and energy sectors. Gold producer Newcrest Mining (NCM) is down 2.8 per cent, taking the losses for 2013 to 11.5 per cent. Oil and gas producer Santos ( STO ) is underperforming after ratings agency Standard & Poor's now considers one of its financial instruments as debt rather than equity. STO shares are down 2.1 per cent after two hours of trade.
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