ASX dives as most sectors drop

ASX dives as most sectors drop

Australian shares have fallen as a broad slump affected almost all sectors of the market

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 31 points, or 0.51 per cent, to 6,099.6 points at 1200 AEDT on Wednesday, while the broader All Ordinaries was down 29.3 points, or 0.47 per cent, at 6,183.8

The utilities sector – the largest gainer on Tuesday – led losses at midday on Wednesday, sliding 1.35 per cent.

Shares in consumer discretionaries and healthcare were both down 0.82 per cent.

Tech shares were the only segment of the market in positive territory, up 0.32 per cent as a whole.

Appen, Afterpay Touch and Xero were up between 0.87 per cent and 1.75 per cent.

The major miners regained some ground to trade flat by midday, with BHP up 0.03 per cent at $37.56 and Rio Tinto down 0.03 per cent to $93.775.

The big four banks were all lower, with ANZ down 0.95 per cent to $25.595, Commonwealth down 0.62 per cent to $70.27, NAB down 0.44 per cent to $24.81 and Westpac down 1.12 per cent to $25.68.

Lynas Corp was up 1.43 per cent to $2.13 after the rare earths miner rebuffed a $1.5 billion takeover offer from Wesfarmers.

Cromwell Property Group was down 0.45 per cent to $1.105 after it confirmed it had made an offer to London-listed property trust RDI REIT, a London-listed property trust with a market capitalisation of $686 million.

The local currency tumbled 0.28 per cent after the New Zealand central bank kept rates on hold but indicated its next move was likely to be down.

The Aussie dollar was buying 71.11 US cents at 1231 AEDT, from 71.22 US cents on Tuesday.

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