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Australia: Shares close near three-month lows


[SYDNEY] Australian shares dropped for a second consecutive session on Tuesday as renewed weakness in iron ore weighed on sentiment, while New Zealand stocks edged lower.

The S&P/ASX 200 index closed down 0.8 per cent at 5,615.2 points, a whisker away from a three-month trough of 5,606.7 touched in early May. It has shed 2 per cent so far this week.

Losses were widespread with energy and property stocks down more than 1 per cent, closely followed by the heavyweight resources sector.

Yet, newly-listed South32, the spinoff of miner BHP Billiton rebounded 14 per cent following Monday's lacklustre debut.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index eased 0.3 per cent or 15.48 points to finish at 5,757.16.