The Business Times

Australia: Shares end lower as virus surge raises economic growth worries

Published Mon, Jul 19, 2021 · 04:03 PM

[SYDNEY] Australian shares closed lower on Monday, with losses seen across major sub-indexes, as a surge in Delta variant cases in the country and other Asian nations raised concerns about economic recovery.

The S&P/ASX 200 index ended down 0.8 per cent at 7,286 points, after falling as much as 1.4 per cent.

Australian authorities said Victoria state will extend a Covid-19 lockdown beyond Tuesday, while other Asian countries also struggled to curb the virus, denting markets already worried about global growth and high inflation.

Investors' focus is now on the Australian manufacturing data, which is due on Wednesday.

"Australian PMIs on Wednesday should remain strong, but with sweeping lockdowns in NSW and Melbourne, any signs of viral infection will not be kind to the Aud or local equities," Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at Oanda said in a note.

In New Zealand, the benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index ended down 0.2 per cent at 12,652.09 points.

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