The Australian share market finished session lower on Friday, 30 April 2021, pressured by month-end position adjustments by investors amidst mixed regional economic data and fears of a fresh surge in coronavirus infection rates in the region, particularly in India and Japan. At closing bell, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 fell 56.46 points, or 0.8%, to 7,025.82. The broader All Ordinaries declined 55.33 points, or 0.75%, to 7,290.70.
Monthly manufacturing data from China pointed to a slow recovery and slackening demand in the world's second-biggest economy. Data showed China's factory activity expanded at a slower-than-expected pace in April as the official manufacturing Purchasing Manager's Index fell to 51.1, from 51.9 in March.
A reading above 50 indicates expansion.
Most sectors finished in the red, with energy leading falls down 1.7%. IT declined 1.4%, while materials fell 1.3%. Only utilities and industrial finished in positive territory, up 0.4% and 0.2% respectively.
Beach Energy shares led losses as it plunged 24% after slashing reserve estimates and earnings outlook following a review of declining output at its Western Flank field in South Australia.
ResMed (RMD) shares were down 4.2% after reports it swung into a net loss of US$78.5m for the March quarter from a US$163m profit a year ago. Revenue was relatively steady at US$768.8m. RMD has set aside US$255m for an ongoing dispute with the ATO.
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