4:30 PM Sydney – Australian central bank lowered its economic growth assessment and may step up fight to weaken the dollar. The dollar gained 0.1% after China reported 5.6% increase in exports and 7.6% rise in imports.
Australian markets closed lower following weakness in Asian markets after the U.S. economic growth accelerated in third quarter to 2.8%.
The faster economic growth in the U.S. prompted fears that the Federal Reserve will bring forward its plan to curtail monetary stimulus and remove one of the foundations that has supported four-year surge in worldwide markets.
Separately, the Reserve Bank of Australia in a quarterly monetary policy lowered its gross domestic product estimate for fiscal 2014 between 2% to 3% from its earlier estimate between 2.5% and 3.5% in August.
In addition, China reported exports in October increased 5.6% and imports rose 7.6%. The larger than expected in China’s exports also drove the Aussie dollar up 0.1%.
China recorded $31.1 billion in trade surplus, the General Administration of Customs said today in Beijing.
Australia’s 10-year government bond yield decreased 3 basis points to 4.13% and 3-year bond yielded 3.07%.
Australian dollar plunged to 94.64 U.S. cents. In stock trading, turnover decreased to 712 million shares worth $4.6 billion.
The ASX 200 index slipped 21.30 or 0.4% to close at 5,400.70 and the broader All Ordinaries slid 21 to 5,394.40.
For the week, the ASX 200 index declined 0.2%.
Stocks in Review
Rio Tinto fell 23 cents to $65.25 and BHP slid 29 cents to $37.95. Woodside Petroleum Limited decreased 10 cents to $39.24.
Westpac slipped 7 cents to $33.18.
Coopers Brewery Limited
, the Australian-based private brewery maker reported revenue in the year ending in June climbed 16.1% to $216 million from $186 million a year ago. Net profit surged 13.4% to $30.8 million compared to $27.16 million a year earlier.
The company said total sales of beer jumped 8.3% to 69.7 million liters, an increase from 64.3 million liters in 2012. Managing Director Tim Cooper said beer sales in Western Australia soared 23.2%, in Queensland climbed 21.4% and in Victoria jumped 17.1%.
Echo Entertainment Group Ltd
declined 3.9% to $2.45 and the gaming company plans to invest $1.5 billion to redevelop the casinos business in Queensland and expected marginal earnings growth for the fiscal 2014.
Fortescue Metals Group Limited
dropped 4.2% to $5.46 after the report iron ore producer may lower its rate on $4.95 billion loan that seek to refinance the debt and will pay interest at 3.25 percentage points which is above the offered rate by the UK’s inter-bank.
The Canada-based natural resources explorer Teck Resources Limited sold its stake in Fortescue Metals for $503 million in cash, local media reports suggested.
Qantas Airways Limited
jumped 2% to $1.25 after the air carrier said it will close its Avalon heavy maintenance facility near Melbourne in March 2014 and lay off 300 staff as the company retires Boeing 747 aircrafts.