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Australia stocks lower at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 down 0.03%

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Australia stocks lower at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 down 0.03%

Australia stocks were lower after the close on Friday, as losses in the Energy, Telecoms Services and A-REITs sectors led shares lower. At the close in Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.03%. The best performers of the session on the S&P/ASX 200 were Pilbara Minerals Ltd (AX:PLS), which rose 6.15% or 0.040 points to trade at 0.690 at the close. Meanwhile, Healthscope (AX:HSO) added 3.81% or 0.090 points to end at 2.450 and ARB Corporation Ltd (AX:ARB) was up 3.38% or 0.530 points to 16.190 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Syrah Resources Ltd (AX:SYR), which fell 7.99% or 0.125 points to trade at 1.440 at the close. Smartgroup Corporation Ltd (AX:SIQ) declined 6.79% or 0.710 points to end at 9.750 and Steadfast Group Ltd (AX:SDF) was down 5.68% or 0.150 points to 2.490. Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the Sydney Stock Exchange by 554 to 549 and 381 ended unchanged. The S&P/ASX 200 VIX, which measures the implied volatility of S&P/ASX 200
options, was down 1.78% to 13.802. Gold Futures for April delivery was down 0.21% or 2.75 to $1322.45 a troy ounce. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Crude oil for delivery in March fell 0.09% or 0.05 to hit $53.74 a barrel, while the April Brent oil contract rose 0.05% or 0.03 to trade at $60.87 a barrel.

AUD/USD was down 0.47% to 0.7238, while AUD/JPY fell 0.47% to 78.83.

The US Dollar Index Futures was up 0.08% at 95.382.