Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index dropped 0.7 percent to 4,852.10 at the 4:10 p.m. close of trading in Sydney, capping a 1.8 percent decline this week.
The following were among the most active shares in the market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.
Mining companies: A measure of primary metals traded in London fell 0.8 percent yesterday, the fourth straight day of losses.
BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP) , the world’s No. 1 mining company, dropped 1 percent to A$47.53. Rio Tinto Group (RIO AU), the world’s second-largest mining company by sales, lost 1.1 percent to A$84.15.
Gold producers: Gold futures for June delivery rose 1.2 percent to settle at $1,472.40 at 1:42 p.m. on the Comex in New York yesterday, the biggest gain for a most-active contract since April 5.
Newcrest Mining Ltd. (NCM) , Australia’s biggest gold producer, rose 1.5 percent to A$41.30. Rival St. Barbara Ltd. (SBM AU) surged 3.2 percent to A$2.25.
Carnarvon Petroleum Ltd. (CVN) fell 4.6 percent to 31 Australian cents after the oil and gas exploration company released a production update for the March quarter.
MacArthur Coal Ltd. (MCC) rose 2.5 percent to A$11.93. The coal producer was raised to “outperform” from “neutral” at Credit Suisse Group AG.
Sky Network Television Ltd. (SKT) fell 0.9 percent to NZ$5.78. New Zealand’s largest pay television company had its stock rating cut to “underperform” from “neutral” by analysts at Credit Suisse Group AG.
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