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Market Update

Australian Trade Deficit Falls, Retail Sales Rise in July

Author: Marcus Jacob
Last Update: 10:32 AM ET September 04 2014

5:00 PM Sydney, Australia Australian indexes declined nearly 0.5% and the Aussie dollar eased despite a positive retail sales report. Trade deficit in July shrank more than expected to $1.36 billion and retail sales in the month rose 0.4%, ahead of expectations.

Australian market indexes declined and the Aussie dollar edged lower despite trade deficit in June unexpectedly declined and retail sales were ahead of expectations.

In the economic news, Australia''s seasonally adjusted trade deficit in July unexpectedly narrowed to $1.36 billion compared to $1.56 billion deficit in June, the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported today.

Exports in the month rose 1% to $27.02 billion and imports increased by $74 million to $28.38 billion.

In a separate report, the bureau said seasonally adjusted retail sales in July jumped 0.4% to $23.31 billion, in line with forecasts but declined from 0.6% increase in June.

Australian dollar closed at 93.41 U.S. cents and in stock trading turnover dropped to 628 million shares worth $3.92 billion.

ASX 200 index slumped 24.80 or 0.4% to 5,631.30 and the broader All Ordinaries index fell 22.50 to 5,632.10.

Stocks in Review

Breville Group Ltd climbed 2.9% to $7.49 after the home appliances maker said Premier Investments Limited increased its stake in the company to 27.33% of voting control from 24.85%.

Fairfax Media Limited slipped 0.6% to 86 cents after the broadcasting and media group received clearance from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission acquisition of All Homes Pty Limited by worth $50 million by the company.

Fortescue Metals Group Limited jumped 1.2% to $4.05 after the iron ore producer achieved record shipments in August to 5.16 million tons of iron ore in 82 cargos.

Wotif.com Holdings Limited declined 4.6% to $3.11 after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission said the takeover could ""remove a significant competitive constraint,"" and it deferred its ruling on whether to approve the deal offered by the U.S.-based Expedia Inc, online travel booking service provider for $699 million.

The ACCC will provide its final ruling on October 2.

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