The ASX was down 28.5pts, or .5 per cent, at 5932.2pts on Thursday. Energy prices fell overnight, putting more strain on the challenged energy industry in Australia. China announced that it would provide tax relief for its embattled domestic iron ore miners. This news puts added pressure on the already depressed iron ore industry in Australia. The Metals and Mining Industry index led the decline, falling 1.56 per cent. The Materials sector was also down 1.27 per cent. The Utilities sector posted gains of .27 per cent. US markets rebounded slightly yesterday. The Dow Jones was up .15 per cent while the S&P 500 was up .27 per cent. The European markets were down, with the DAX falling .72 per cent and the FTSE 100 falling .35 per cent. Asian markets are mixed on Thursday. The Hang Seng has surged 3.11 per cent while the Shanghai Composite has fallen 1.08 per cent so far on Thursday. The Nikkei 225 is up .75 per cent near closing on Thursday.
Amcor Limited (ASX:AMC) was down 5c, or .35 per cent, at $14.25 per share. The global packaging giant has signed an agreement with British American Tobacco to purchase the tobacco company’s packaging subsidiary Souza Cruz in Brazil.
Alumina Limited (ASX:AWC) was up 3.2c, or 1.96 per cent, at $1.66 per share. The company owns 40 per cent of Alcoa, the world’s third largest producers of aluminium. Alcoa recently returned its profits into the black and has moved the company into a “strong balance sheet” position.
AGL Energy (ASX:AGL) was down 4c, or .27 per cent, at $15.00 per share. AGL announced a major deal to purchase gas from Bass Straight for three years.
BHP Billiton (ASX:BHP) was down 55c, or 1.8 per cent, at $30.19 per share. China recently announced it would be supporting its own iron ore miners, putting more pressure on mining giants such a BHP.
Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) was down 42c, or .74 per cent, at $56.58 per share.