Australian shares slip as energy stocks weigh; set for third weekly loss

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Nov 26 (Reuters) – Australian shares slipped on Friday and were set for a third consecutive weekly loss, dragged down by energy stocks as oil prices dipped in thin trading on the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.

The S&P/ASX 200 index (.AXJO) dropped 0.5% points to 7,375.0 by 0019 GMT, with all major sub-indexes in the red.

The energy subindex (.AXEJ) fell 0.6%, but it was on track to post its first weekly jump after six straight weeks of losses, after oil prices inched lower as investors eyed how major producers respond to the U.S.-led emergency oil release designed to cool the market.

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Woodside Petroleum (APL.AX), Oil Search (OSH.AX) and Santos (STO.AX) fell between 0.6% and 1.2%.

Miners (.AXMM) fell 0.7%, to track a third consecutive weekly fall, despite iron ore stretching its rally to a fifth straight session on Thursday.

Major miners BHP (BHP.AX), Rio Tinto (RIO.AX) and Fortescue Metals Group (FMG.AX) fell between between 0.6% and 1.9%.

The country’s financials stocks (.AXFJ) also added to the losses with a 0.5% drop, with AMP Ltd (AMP.AX) falling as much as 2.9% after flagging a $234 million additional impairment charge for its fiscal 2021.

The “Big Four” banks were mixed, with Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ.AX) inching higher even after the country’s securities regulator sued the bank over home loan referrals. read more

Gold stocks (.AXGD) also dropped 0.7% despite bullion edging up buoyed by persistent inflation concerns.

Gold miner Westgold Resources were among top losers in the sector, dropping as much as 3.4%, while heavyweight Newcrest Mining (NCM.AX) fell 0.4%.

On the other hand, payments solution provider EML Payments (EML.AX) rose as much as 8.3%, extending its near 3% gain from the previous session on Irish central bank’s permit for its unit to sign new customers.

New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index (.NZ50) dropped 0.8% to 12,696.09.

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Reporting by Indranil Sarkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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