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Miners, health and consumer shares had pulled the Australian market lower after two hours’ trading.

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark index was lower by 52.2 points, or 0.85 per cent, to 6074.0 at 1200 AEST on Friday.

The All Ordinaries index was lower by 51.5 points, or 0.81 per cent, to 6259.1.

The materials sector, which includes miners, was down 1.79 per cent.

BHP was lower by 1.76 per cent to $37.76, Rio lost 1.12 per cent to $98.99 and Fortescue fell 2.02 per cent to $18.91.

Gold miners were among the damaged stock. Evolution Mining had a 3.03 per cent loss to $5.43.

There were dips of more than 1.0 per cent for health, consumer discretionaries and staples, as well as energy and telecommunications.

Information technology shares, which have been keenly bought during the pandemic, were down 2.32 per cent.

Financials were higher by 0.38 per cent.

In banking, ANZ gained 0.87 per cent to $18.49, the Commonwealth lost 0.15 per cent to $68.96, NAB sprung by 1.46 per cent to $18.06 and Westpac climbed by 1.52 per cent to $17.66.

There have wide-ranging fortunes for companies reporting results.

Building suppliers provider Boral slumped to a full-year loss of $1.14 billion after it wrote down the value of assets due to the weakened Australian and US housing markets.

Write-downs of $1.32 billion were based on forecast declines in the US and Australian housing markets.

Shareholders will not receive a final dividend.

Shares were higher by 0.26 per cent to $3.85.

Harvey Norman lifted net profit by 19.4 per cent to $480.54 million as consumers spent more time at home during the pandemic.

Shareholders will receive a fully franked final dividend of 18 cents per share, which is down from the previous fully franked final dividend of 21 cents per share.

Shares were lower by 0.92 per cent to $4.27.

In the US overnight, the S&P 500 and the Dow closed higher as investors digested the US Federal Reserve’s new strategy to adopt an average inflation target and restore the United States to full employment.

The Nasdaq closed narrowly lower.

Reserve chair Jerome Powell told the Jackson Hole symposium the central bank may continue efforts to prop up the economy even if inflation rises above its target level of 2 per cent, as long as it had been weak before then.

The Australian dollar was buying 72.71 US cents at 1200 AEST, higher from 72.34 US cents at Thursday’s close.