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Shares Fall As Australian Unemployment Hits 12-Year High

Shares Fall As Australian Unemployment Hits 12-Year High

In the last week, the Australian S&P/ASX 200 index has been on a losing streak with losses seen in five consecutive trading sessions.
The last time the Australian index experienced 5 days of losses, was in early December at the time when the U.S. Federal Reserve began reducing its asset buying program.

Shares Fall As Australian Unemployment Hits 12-Year High

In the last eight months, Australian shares have had the longest losing streak which has now been impacted further by an increase in the unemployment rate.

On Thursday, with the release of the latest unemployment numbers, which took investors by surprise, Australian shares were negatively impacted and their eight-month losing streak was extended.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed data which showed that the unemployment rate had jumped from 6% in June to 6.4% in July.

Analysts were hoping that the rate would remain steady.

Furthermore, the Bureau revealed that the participation rate rose 0.1% to 64.8 percent.

The increase in the unemployment rate marks the highest rate seen in Australia in more than a decade.

Despite this, the mining sector in Australia has been the strongest on the indices with the shares of Rio Tinto, who is Australia’s biggest iron ore exporter, increasing by 0.8% to $66.32.

Meanwhile, the shares of BHP Billiton advanced 0.4% to $38.47.

The gold sector also performed well as a result of geopolitical tensions in Gaza and the Ukraine. When the ASX closed, the spot price of gold was $US1306.94 per ounce.

OCA News Editor

Jenny McKinnley is OCA’s financial correspondent. After spending years on the trading floor in both NY and London, she offers insight from the inside out on world financial news and events.

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