Headline indices of the Australia market were higher after recouping early losses on Friday, 12 October 2018, as investors chased for bottom fishing in beaten down shares. However, market gains were limited as investor sentiments remained low amid lingering anxiety over the Sino-U. S. trade war and rising U. S. interest rates. Most of ASX sectors were in the red, with energy being one of the weakest performers after a sharp fall in oil prices overnight, meanwhile banks were under pressure on concerns over the fallout of a powerful inquiry into wrongdoings in the sector. Around late afternoon trade, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index rose 17.94 points, or 0.3%, at 5,901.70 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index added 17.12 points, or 0.3%, to 6,010.60 points.
Shares of banks and financial players continued to weigh on the broader market on concerns over the fallout of a powerful inquiry into wrongdoings in the sector, with Westpac Banking Corp, ANZ Banking, Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Australia Bank were lower in a range of 0.5% to 2%. The move in ANZ's stock came following an announcement by its chief executive that the bank had fired over 200 staff for wrongdoing.
Shares of energy sector also added to the bearish sentiment, after Brent crude futures fell 3.4% on Thursday.
Woodside Petroleum, the country's largest independent oil and gas producer, lost 1.7%, while Santos dipped 1.6%.
Shares of materials companies rebounded, with BHP, Rio Tinto and Fortescue Metals gained in a range of 2% to 4%, as iron ore and copper prices edged up overnight. Gold miners Evolution Mining and Newcrest Mining gained more than 3% each after gold prices settled at a ten-week high as investors flocked to the safe-haven asset.
CURRENCY: Australian Dollar was higher against greenback and other major currencies on Friday. The Australian dollar was quoted at $0.7125, up from $0.7070 on Thursday.
OFFSHORE MARKET NEWS, US stock market tumbled for a second straight day on Thursday, rattled by rising interest rates, signs of a slowdown in the global economy and the US-China trade dispute. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slumped 2.1% to 25,052.83, down 2.1% or 545 points. The broad-based S&P 500 also dropped 2.1% to 2,728.26, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index fell 1.3% to 7,329.06.
European shares hit their lowest in more than 21 months on Thursday following a slide on Wall Street as jitters over rising US Treasury yields and signs of slowing global growth prompted broad selling of risky assets. The German DAX Index slumped by 1.5%. The French CAC 40 Index and the U. K.'s FTSE 100 Index both fell by 1.9%.
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