Australian shares have hit the skids over concerns about a global growth slowdown, with nearly every sector on the local bourse in the red.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 60.1 points, or 0.96 per cent, to 6,203.8 points at 1615 AEDT on Friday, while the broader All Ordinaries was down 57.1 points, or 0.9 per cent, at 6,287.1.
It follows losses on the US and major European markets overnight after the European Central Bank slashed its 2019 growth and inflation forecasts.
Every sector was lower aside from property trusts, which was up marginally.
“It’s a bit of an unwind today, a bit of risk-off,” said Chris Weston, head of research with Pepperstone in Melbourne.
“The concern we’ve had is about global growth. What the ECB did has reverberated across the globe … sent global shockwaves through the market.”
Mr Weston said Pepperstone’s clients were concerned about whether “today is the start of a more of a trend, the start of a deeper pullback. It feels like it’s got more legs there.”
It was worst day for the ASX200 since January 2, but overall the market still closed up 0.18 per cent for the week.
The financial sector was the worst hit, down 1.58 per cent.
ANZ was down 2.27 per cent, CBA down 2.01 per cent, Westpac down 1.32 per cent and NAB down 1.13 per cent.
Santos, Woodside Petroleum, Oil Search, Origin Energy and Beach Energy were down between 1.14 per cent and 2.38 per cent despite oil prices moving higher overnight.
Telco Telstra was down 0.31 per cent, while pharma giant CSL was down 0.06 per cent.
The Aussie dollar is buying 70.01 US cents, from 70.46 US cents on Thursday.
ON THE ASX:
* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 60.1 points, or 0.96 per cent, at 6,203.8 points at 1630 AEDT on Friday.
* The All Ordinaries was down 57.1 points, or 0.9 per cent, at 6,287.1.
* At 1630 AEDT, the SPI200 futures index down four points at 6150.
CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1630 AEDT:
One Australian dollar buys:
* 70.01 US cents, from 70.46 US on Thursday
* 77.81 Japanese yen, from 78.72
* 62.56 euro cents, from 62.34
* 53.55 British pence, from 53.46
* 103.64 NZ cents, from 103.85
The spot price of gold in Sydney at 1630 AEDT was $US1292.87 per fine ounce, from $US1285.38 on Thursday.