Australian share market lost momentum on Thursday, despite the change of Australia's Prime Minister pushed the market higher earlier. Resources shares surged on expectation that discussions between the government and the miners could end the uncertainty caused by the proposed mining tax. The local market ended slightly lower led by financials stocks. At the close, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index gave up 6.4 points, or 0.14 per cent, at 4479.7 while the broader All Ordinaries index fell 5.3 points, or 0.12 per cent, to 4504.1.
Australian shares on Thursday rose on Rio Tinto's report on strong production and sales. The upbeat jobs data and rebounding Asian markets also helped to lift the market. At the close, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index gained 29.9 points, or 0.6 per cent, at 4898, while the broader All Ordinaries index advanced 29.3 points, or 0.6 per cent, to 4929.4.
Wall Street closed flat yesterday after the market rallied for two days. Traders turned cautious before the third quarter earnings kick off. Alcoa (NYSE:AA), the first company to unveil its earnings, posted a better-than-expected result with third quarter net income of US$77 million, after three consecutive quarters of losses.
Overnight Wall Street was up on economic data, positive earnings and the nomination of Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke to serve a second term. The Conference Board's August index of consumer confidence rose for a second month, exceeding economists' forecast.
The Australian shares Wednesday closed slightly higher ahead of the US Federal Reserve's monetary outlook meeting. The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index gained 10.1 points, or 0.27 per cent, at 3807 points, while the broader-based All Ordinaries index rose 9.2 points, or 0.24 per cent, to 3802.2 points.
Yesterday the Australian share market extended its gains despite a weak lead on Wall Street. The benchmark S&P/ASX200 rose 0.8%, or 29.3 points, at 3609.3, while the broader All Ordinaries added 0.8%, or 28.9 points, at 3546.2.
The Australian market ended lower Friday. The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 46.5 points, or 1.4%, at 3402.4. The broader All Ordinaries index shed 45 points, or 1.3%, to 3353. The market sentiment hit by the bearish tone from overseas is not likely to change by the upcoming half year earnings.
The Australian share market closed firmly in the black on last Friday, driven by a resurgent resources sector after the commodities index posted its biggest weekly gain in 33 years. US stocks rose on Friday as financial stocks gained and a plunge in oil prices soothed worries about inflation and consumer spending.