The Australian stock market has marked seven straight days of losses for the first time since January 2016, as US-China trade concerns continue to drag on the indices.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 16.6 points, or 0.27 per cent, to 6,143.8 points on Friday, while the broader All Ordinaries index was down 15.5 points, or 0.25 per cent, to 6,252.3 points.
CommSec market analyst Tom Piotrowski said the market consistently being under pressure has been disconcerting as a number of risk factors combine with the market coming off a more than 10 year high.
“People have been looking to find some sort of satisfying argument that sums it up and that has probably been the allusive aspect of what has happened over the last seven days,” he said.
“You can, in broad terms, put it down to the fact that institutions have not been participating on the buy side as this market has come off.”
The Australian dollar also came under pressure after weak July housing loans data sparked fears of a further slowdown in the property market.
Lending to investors in property declined for the fifth straight month, hitting a five-year trough.
The Aussie was down 0.6 per cent for the week, piling on losses from last week’s 1.8 per cent slip.
It was buying 71.52 US cents at 1700 AEST, down from 71.69 on Thursday.
A subdued lead from Wall Street weighed on local shares amid lingering trade concerns and after US Congress grilled big tech companies overnight.
Most local sectors struggled throughout the day, with energy and health care leading the losses, down one and 1.6 per cent respectively.
Shares in biotech giant CSL were down three per cent after slipping 4.5 per cent a day earlier – though the company was still up by about 60 per cent this year.
Greencross shares were $4.00, slightly up after the vet and pet care service was removed from the ASX200, along with Genworth Mortgage Insurance.
They will be replaced by agribusiness company Elders Limited and waste management and recycling operator Bingo Industries from September 24.
On the ASX:
* The S&P/ASX200 closed down 16.6 points, or 0.27 per cent, to 6,143.8 points
* The All Ordinaries was down 15.5 points, or 0.25 per cent, to 6,252.3 points
* In futures trading the SPI200 futures index was down 14 points, or 0.23 per cent, at 6,131.0 points at 1630 AEST.
CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1700 AEST:
One Australian dollar buys:
* 71.52 US cents, from 71.69 US cents on Thursday.
* 79.11 Japanese yen, from 79.85
* 61.42 euro cents, from 61.70
* 55.27 British pence, from 55.55
* 108.74 NZ cents, from 108.99
The spot price of gold in Sydney at 1700 AEST was $US1,200.70 per fine ounce, up from $US1,197.17 per fine ounce on Thursday.