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Australia, N.Z. Stocks: BHP, Caltex Australia, Data#3, Sphere

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index fell 0.4 percent to 4,606.90 at the 4:10 p.m. close of trading in Sydney, reversing a loss of as much as 1.4 percent after the central bank unexpectedly left its benchmark interest rate unchanged for a fifth straight month.

New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index declined 0.3 percent to 3,218.32 at the 5 p.m. close in Wellington.

The following were among the most active shares in the market today. Stock symbols are in parentheses after company names.


Mining shares: Copper futures for December delivery slid 0.7 percent yesterday to close at $3.664 a pound at 1:20 p.m. in New York, the biggest loss for a most-active contract since Sept. 10.

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP AU), the world’s largest mining company, declined 1.3 percent to A$39.50. Rio Tinto Group (RIO AU), the world’s third-biggest miner, retreated 1.4 percent to A$77.

Caltex Australia Ltd. (CTX AU) lost 3.6 percent to A$11.56 after the nation’s biggest oil refiner was downgraded to “sell” from “hold” at Deutsche Bank AG.

Data#3 Ltd. (DTL AU) declined 1.5 percent to A$9.75 after its stock rating was cut to “hold” from “buy” by analysts led by Nick Harris at Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc.

Sphere Minerals Ltd. (SPH AU) sank 3 percent to A$2.62 after saying it hasn’t received an alternative proposal to the recommended Xstrata Plc offer from Sin-Tang Development Pte Ltd. or any other party.

New Zealand:

Kathmandu Holdings Ltd. (KMD NZ), a New Zealand-based retailer of outdoor equipment, dropped 2.6 percent to NZ$1.88 after business confidence in the nation fell in the third quarter to the lowest level since mid-2009. Michael Hill International Ltd. (MHI NZ), a jewelry retailer, lost 1.5 percent to 66 New Zealand cents.

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