Headline indices of the Australian financial market closed down after erasing early gains on Wednesday, 13 February 2019, weighed down by declines in heavyweight drugmaker CSL after posting a disappointing first-half profit rise and Commonwealth Bank as traded ex-dividend. At closing bell, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index dropped 15.51 points, or 0.26%, to 6,063.57 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index shed 8.52 points, or 0.14%, to 6,140.18 points.
Financial stocks declined, with shares of top lender Commonwealth Bank of Australia down near 3 percent as traded ex-dividend.
The company has declared a $2 a share interim dividend on March 28.
Healthcare stocks took a hit, with CSL, the fifth largest stock in the country, down 3.9 percent as investors grew wary of slowing growth in the company and concerns of regulatory delays in China after the company logged a 10 percent rise in its interim profit.
Materials and resources stocks were down, weighed down by a sharp fall in iron ore futures. Shares of top miners BHP Group and Rio Tinto slid 0.6 percent and 1 percent, respectively.
CURRENCY: Australian Dollar rose against greenback and against a basket of other peers on Wednesday. The Aussie dollar strengthened, buying 71.34 US cents, from 70.81 US cents on Tuesday.
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