(RTTNews.com) - The Australian stock market is declining on Tuesday despite the positive cues overnight from Wall Street amid an easing in U.S.-China trade tensions and higher oil prices. Mining and bank stocks are among the leading decliners.
In late-morning trades, the S&P/ASX 200 Index is down 41.10 points or 0.68 percent to 6,043.40, off a low of 6,041.00 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is losing 37.80 points or 0.61 percent to 6,152.40.
The big four banks - Westpac, Commonwealth Bank, National Australia Bank and ANZ Banking - are lower in a range of 0.5 percent to 1.1 percent.
Mining stocks are also mostly lower after a fall in iron ore prices. BHP Billiton is declining 0.6 percent and Rio Tinto is down 0.2 percent, while Fortescue Metals is adding 0.3 percent.
Meanwhile, gold miners are higher after gold futures ended little changed overnight. Evolution Mining is adding 0.2 percent and Newcrest Mining is up 0.4 percent.
Oil stocks are also mostly higher after crude oil prices touched a three-and-a-half year high overnight. Oil Search is rising 0.2 percent and Santos is advancing 0.6 percent, while Woodside Petroleum is declining more than 1 percent.
James Hardie Industries reported a 47 percent fall in its full-year profit, reflecting acquisition costs, asbestos adjustments and debt, while adjusted net operating profit rose. The building materials supplier's shares are advancing more than 2 percent.
Healthscope's shares are losing more than 4 percent after the company rejected takeover bids from private equity funds BGH and Brookfield.
In the currency market, the Australian dollar is higher against the U.S. dollar on Tuesday. The local unit was trading at US$0.7586, up from US$0.7508 on Monday.
On Wall Street, stocks closed higher on Monday amid optimism about a positive outcome from trade talks between the U.S. and China. The Dow jumped 298.20 points or 1.21 percent to 25,013.29, the Nasdaq added 39.70 points or 0.54 percent to 7,394.04 and the S&P 500 gained 20.04 points or 0.74 percent to 2,733.01.
The major European markets also moved to the upside on Monday. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index jumped by 1 percent and the French CAC 40 Index advanced by 0.4 percent. Meanwhile, the German markets were close for a holiday.
Crude oil prices rose on Monday amid Venezuela and Iran supply concerns. June WTI crude climbed $0.96 or 1.4 percent to settle at $72.24 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
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