The following were among the most active shares in the market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.
BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP) fell 2.3 percent to A$34.58. The world’s biggest mining company declined after the London Metal Exchange Index of six metals dropped 1.4 percent yesterday. Rio Tinto Group (RIO) slipped 2.3 percent to A$63.62.
Echo Entertainment Group Ltd. (EGP) (EGP AU) dropped 0.7 percent to A$4.26. Echo said Crown Ltd. (CWN) and its controlled bodies corporate became a substantial shareholder in Echo on March 2. Crown dropped 1.8 percent to A$8.24.
Gloucester Coal Ltd. (GCL) fell 3.7 percent to A$8.15. The Australian producer recommended shareholders accept an amended A$2.05 billion ($2.2 billion) takeover offer by Yanzhou Coal Mining Co. (1171) after the Chinese company completed a study of its books.
National Australia Bank Ltd. (NAB) fell 0.2 percent to A$23.48. The Australian lender’s stock rating was raised to “buy” from “hold” by analysts at Deutsche Bank AG.
Westfield Group (WDC) fell 2.7 percent to A$8.69. The Sydney-based retailer is in talks to become a partner in a south London shopping mall with co-owners who may default on a loan for the property after the main office tenant moved out.
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