It was a soft night for international markets, as fatigue set in after a six-day rally and disappointing Japanese growth data provided a fresh reminder of the headwinds facing the global economy.
In London the UK’s FTSE 100 shed 15 points (-0.3%) to settle at 5832, whilst the CAC (-0.3%) and DAX (-0.5%) also lost ground.
Stateside, the Dow Jones lost 39 points (-0.3%) to settle at 13169, whilst the S&P and NASDAQ were flat.
The euro gained the most in more than a week versus the greenback after Italy’s debt sale damped concern nations in the currency bloc won’t be able to access the debt markets.
The Aussie dollar was slightly weaker overnight and this morning is buying US$1.0512.
Oil fell for a second day as US equities moved lower and as Japan’s economy grew more slowly than expected. The discount of New York futures to Brent widened to a four-month high.
Crude for September delivery decreased 14 cents to settle at $92.73 a barrel on the NYMEX. Prices are down 6.2% this year.
In company news, NAB has reported quarterly cash profit of $1.4 billion, unchanged from the previous corresponding quarter.
Today’s session will bring us data in the form of NAB business confidence and new motor vehicle sales, 11:30am, AEST.