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ASX reacts to US presidential debate

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Published on: Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Australian share market has finished lower, however it did claw back some earlier losses following signs Hillary Clinton may be leading Donald Trump after the first US presidential candidate debate.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index closed 0.47 per cent lower at 5,405.9 points, with most sectors in the red.

CMC Markets chief market strategist Michael McCarthy said the local bourse started Tuesday lower as investors worried about the outcome of the US presidential candidate debate.

But after the debate, which started at 1100 AEST, Australian shares regained some ground.

"The major futures have reacted positively with the Dow bouncing by a good 80 points," Mr McCarthy said.

"Overall, the market gave the debate to Hillary Clinton on two scores; one on policy and the other on poise and that eased the risk premium."

However, he said a Hillary Clinton presidency was not exaclty seen as a positive for markets, rather it was considered to be less of a negative than a Trump presidency.

Online polls following the debate have had conflicting results, with some saying Clinton won the night while others gave it to Trump.

Morgans Brisbane senior private client adviser Bill Chatterton said some believed the candidates were neck-and-neck.

"General commentary is calling it basically a tie. It doesn't appear to have given a lead one way or the other," he said.

As for local shares, the big four banks and the major miners were all lower and energy stocks continued to take a hit from concerns about oil supply and prices.

Commonwealth Bank was down 70 cents to $72.70, ANZ shed 15 cents to $27.45, National Australia Bank fell six cents to $27.98, and Westpac dropped 39 cents to $29.96.

As for the big mining companies, Rio Tinto fell 37 cents to $50.01, BHP slipped five cents to $21.50 and Fortescue Metals declined seven cents to $4.88.

The energy players were among the worst performers with Santos down four cents, or 1.12 per cent, at $3.52 and Woodside Petroleum down 43 cents, or 1.58 per cent, at $26.70.

Gold miner Newcrest Mining was up 47 cents, or 2.09 per cent, at $22.98 while gold play Evolution was also stronger, up four cents or 1.6 per cent to $2.53.

Telecommunications giant Telstra declined eight cents, or 1.54 per cent, to $5.11.

KEY FACTS:

* At 1615 AEST, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index was down 25.5 points, or 0.47 per cent, at 5,405.9 points.

* The broader All Ordinaries index was down 25.4 points, or 0.46 per cent, at 5,493.7 points.

* The December share price index futures contract was down 18 points at 5,399, with 31,667 contracts traded.

* National turnover was 3.01 billion securities traded, worth $6.4 billion.


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