Aussie, NZ shares end lower as markets seek clarity on Sino-U.S. talks
* Aussie shares snap 3 sessions of gains
* Financials, miners biggest weights on index
(Updates to close)
Feb 26 (Reuters) - Australian shares snapped a three-session
winning streak on Tuesday, with financials and resources stocks
leading broad-based losses as investors were racked by
uncertainty over the progress of Sino-U.S. trade talks.
The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.9 percent or 57.9
points to 6,128.40 at the close of trade, its worst session in
nearly two months. The benchmark rose 0.3 percent on Monday.
After his positive comments over the weekend, U.S. President
Donald Trump later struck a cautious note saying a trade deal
"could happen fairly soon, or it might not happen at all."
Financial stocks weighed the heaviest on the Australian
benchmark, with the big four banks of the country ending about
of 0.5 percent to 1.2 percent lower.
The financial subindex saw its worst session in more
than two weeks, shedding about 0.9 percent for the day.
Bourse operator ASX Ltd ended about 3 percent lower
after it said it would sell its nearly 19 percent stake in
wealth manager IRESS Ltd.
Mining stocks, many of which are heavily reliant on Chinese
demand, were also pressured. The mining subindex shed
about 1 percent, with heavyweights BHP Group and Rio
Tinto ending 1.3 percent and 0.6 percent lower
On a more positive note, petrol station operator Caltex
Australia ended about 4.7 percent higher after
reporting a better than forecast annual net profit.
Satellite services provider SpeedCast International Ltd
was the best performer on the ASX 200 after it posited
a much stronger earnings performance in 2019.
New Zealand shares edged lower as most financial stocks fell
in line with their Australian peers. The benchmark S&P/NZX 50
index fell 0.2 percent or 21.5 points to finish the
session at 9,323.13.
The New Zealand shares of Westpac Banking Corp and
Australia and New Zealand Banking Group ended 0.6
percent and 1 percent lower, respectively.
(Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Kim
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