ASX weekly: BHP, Rio Tinto, Fortescue offset Westpac, NAB, ANZ & CBA losses

The Australian share market closed higher last week ahead of the federal election, after the major miners helped offset losses across the heavyweight banks.
BHP & Rio Tinto
By Rob Bayer (Source: Shutterstock)

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 closed 0.88% higher at 6,365 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index climbed 1.05% to 6,460 points.

Most sectors closed higher last week with the mining-related materials sector leading gains, rising by nearly 5% thanks to stronger commodity prices.

Unsurprisingly, among the biggest market value winners were BHP, Fortescue Metals and Rio Tinto.

AMP Capital Chief Economist Shane Oliver said typically, the local share market treads cautiously in lead up to elections, but the market showed no signs of that ahead of Saturday’s federal election.

Dr Oliver said rising iron ore and oil prices boosted the resource stocks, while ongoing talk of rate cuts helped lift the property, health and consumer stocks to offset a sharp fall in the banks.

“The Australian share market has already performed pretty well over the last few months and is likely to be dominated by issues around global trade, slowing growth, interest rates and the iron ore price,” he said.

“I suspect the market will quickly move on from the election.”

ASX 200 Listed Companies – Top 5 Biggest Market Cap Gains and Losses (10/05/2019 to 17/05/2019)
Biggest Gains Biggest Losses
Rank Company $ Change in Market Cap Closing Share Price % Change in Share Price Rank Company $ Change in Market Cap Closing Share Price % Change in Share Price
1 BHP Group (BHP) $4,890,113,314 $38.46 4.5% 1 Westpac Banking (WBC) -$6,446,957,813 $25.41 -6.9%
2 Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) $4,341,340,534 $8.95 18.7% 2 National Australia Bank (NAB) -$5,762,036,970 $23.92 -7.9%
3 CSL (CSL) $4,197,644,089 $206.51 4.7% 3 ANZ Banking (ANZ) -$4,674,739,706 $25.85 -6.0%
4 RIO Tinto (RIO) $2,256,994,581 $101.35 6.4% 4 Commonwealth Bank (CBA) -$4,549,515,533 $72.83 -3.4%
5 Telstra Corporation (TLS) $1,783,994,678 $3.56 4.4% 5 Macquarie Group (MQG) -$1,572,568,250 $119.93 -3.7%
Prepared by Canstar. Prices taken as of week to week close.

The financials sector was the weakest performer last week, falling by about 4% in total, with the nation’s five biggest banks dominating market value losses.

Westpac led losses after it shed about $6.4 billion from its market value, with its shares down by almost 7% to $25.41.

As for the biggest share price gains, iron ore miner Fortescue Metals and gold miner Evolution Mining topped the list, followed by property group Lendlease and graphite miner Syrah Resources.

Accounting platform Xero was also among the top five biggest share price performers last week as it continued to rise off the back of its strong first half-year profit result released earlier this month.

ASX 200 Listed Companies – Top 5 Biggest Share Price Gains and Losses (10/05/2019 to 17/05/2019)
Biggest Gains Biggest Losses
Rank Company Closing Share Price % Change Rank Company Closing Share Price % Change
1 Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) $8.95 18.7% 1 Reliance Worldwide (RWC) $3.84 -16.7%
2 Evolution Mining (EVN) $3.70 11.1% 2 Mayne Pharma (MYX) $0.59 -12.0%
3 Lendlease Group (LLC) $14.20 11.1% 3 St Barbara (SBM) $2.91 -8.5%
4 Syrah Resources (SYR) $1.25 10.6% 4 National Australia Bank (NAB) $23.92 -7.9%
5 Xero (XRO) $61.30 10.6% 5 Pinnacle Investment Management (PNI) $5.49 -7.3%
Prepared by Canstar. Prices taken as of week to week close.

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