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The Australian sharemarket is having its second consecutive challenging session, with the ASX 200 down 1.25 per cent at lunch. The enthusiasm which hit markets on Monday has faded quickly on a number of concerns including confusion over USChina trade progress, worries about the US economic outlook and ahead of major events in coming days.
The world’s two largest economies seem to be providing conflicting versions of outcomes from last weekend’s G20 Summit. The Washington Post suggested that China has not acknowledged a 90-day deadline for reaching a trade deal and has not said it would ‘immediately’ buy significant farm goods from the US. This morning however Reuters reported that China said it would implement specific issues agreed on as quickly as possible.
The flattening yield curve (small difference between short and long-term US interest rates) also has in the past signalled a weaker American economy.
It is yet another day of widespread selling with all sectors coming under pressure this morning. Losses from the big banks, CSL and heavy falls from Telstra (TLS) seem to be doing the most damage.
TPG Telecom (TPM) is edging higher after saying it is tracking well to meet its profit goals over FY19 and reports it has avoided a potential Board spill. Coles (COL) has broken a six-day losing streak after receiving a broker upgrade this morning.
Macquarie Media (MRN) is up 9 per cent at lunch after Nine Entertainment (NEC) confirmed it has had preliminary talks to potentially acquire the company behind 2GB and 3AW. NEC – which is in the process of merging with Fairfax (FXJ) – is coming under selling pressure.
The Bank of Queensland (BOQ) is down 2.5 per cent and is underperforming its peers after the resignation of its Managing Director and CEO after six-years in the top job.
The Aussie economy has expanded at a slower than expected pace, with 3Q GDP up just 0.3 per cent (consensus 0.6 per cent). This takes the growth over the year to 2.8 per cent. The result has pushed the Australian dollar lower this morning. An update on China’s Services sector will be released at 12.45pm AEDT.
956.4m shares have changed hands so far worth $2.1bn. 251 stocks are up, 709 are down and 302 are unchanged.
The US market will remain shut tonight for the funeral of former US President George Bush Snr. The Federal Reserve chair is set to deliver a testimony to congress on the economy. An update on private sector jobs growth will also be in focus tonight. 
Published by CommSec