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Market Update

Australian Indexes Drop 0.9%, Mantra Group Completes $239 Million IPO

Author: Marcus Jacob
Last Update: 10:44 AM ET June 20 2014

5:00 PM Sydney Australian market indexes dropped and closed at the low in the session but precious metals linked stocks gained after gold jumped 3%, the largest one-day gain in the year. Mantra Group, second largest hotel and resort group in Australia closed up 4% on first day of trading.

Australian stocks dropped and closed at the low of the session after market indexes reversed positive momentum built in the last three days of trading.

Broader market indexes closed lower but precious metals linked stocks soared 4% after gold and platinum prices edged higher.

Australian dollar nearly flat at 94.05 U.S. cents and stock trading turnover slipped to 970 million shares worth $4.94 billion.

ASX 200 index slumped 48.70 or 0.9% to 5,419.50 and the broader All Ordinaries dropped 44.80 to 5,401.60. For the week, ASX 200 rose 0.3%.

Stocks in Review

Austin Engineering Limited surged 8.7% to $1.75 after the mining equipment services provider won two Chilean contracts worth between $15 million and $18 million.

Hills Limited slipped 1.1% to $1.72 after the electronic security system developer intends to acquire Audio Products Group, a supplier of professional audio products for $15 million.

Insurance Australia Group Limited fell 1.2% to $5.81 after the insurance company prepared to acquire insurance underwriting business from Wesfarmers Limited.

NIB Holdings Limited climbed 3.3% to $3.15 after the private health insurer said consolidated operating profit for the year may be lower than the previous estimate of $73 million to $80 million.

Mantra Group Limited declined 3.8% to $1.78 on its first day of listing and the company priced its initial public offering at $1.80. The hotel and resort operator estimated annual profit of $27.4 million.

Westfield Group closed nearly unchanged at $10.82 after shareholder approved $70 billion restructuring plan to split the property developer and retail mall operator to split its domestic and international businesses.

Chairman Frank Lowy said approval clears the way to create two independent companies, Australia and New Zealand focused Scentre Group and Westfield Corporation focused on rest of the world.

Sources: Data collected by 123jump.com and Ticker.com from company press releases, filings and corporate websites. Market data: BATS Exchange. Inc