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Market Update

Australian Indexes Drop 1.2%

Author: Marcus Jacob
Last Update: 12:17 PM ET March 20 2014

5:00 PM Sydney Australian markets turned lower and the Aussie dollar eased after the prospects of interest rate increase in the U.S. rose after the Federal Reserve trimmed its bond purchase program. Myer Holdings reported interim earnings decline of 8%.

Australian markets turned negative on a knee jerk reaction after the U.S. Fed trimmed its bond purchase program by $10 billion.

The move sparked the worries that the rates will rise as the U.S. economy gathers momentum.

Australian dollar closed at 90.18 U.S. cents and stock market trading turnover climbed to 1.14 billion shares worth $7.17 billion.

The ASX 200 index dropped 61.60 or 1.2% to 5,294 and the broader All Ordinaries slipped 60.30 to 5,312.70.

Stocks in Review

Rio Tinto slumped 56 cents to $60.80. BHP declined 66 cents to $35.20. Woodside Petroleum Limited decreased 43 to $37.81.

Westpac Banking Corp dropped 51 cents to $33.24.

Myer Holdings Ltd plunged 5.3% to $2.52 after the department store operator said revenue in the first-half rose 0.3% to $1.74 billion and net profit declined 8.1% to $80.77 million.

Toll Holdings Limited slipped 1.9% to $5.15 after the logistics service provider sold its Japan unit KSU Logistics for $19.5 million.

Yellow Brick Road Holdings Limited surged 6.6% to 65 cents after the financial service provider affirming on track to deliver its first year profit in the 2015 financial year.

The company reported a net loss of $3.6 million in the first-half of the 2014.

Wotif.com Holdings Limited plunged 11.3% to $2.66 a day after surging 20%.

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