Australia shares lower at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 down 0.55%

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Australia shares lower at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 down 0.55%
Credit: © Reuters. – Australia equities were lower at the close on Friday, as losses in the Healthcare , Telecoms Services and Consumer Staples sectors propelled shares lower.

At the close in Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.55%.

The biggest gainers of the session on the S&P/ASX 200 were New Hope Corporation Ltd (ASX: NHC ), which rose 9.02% or 0.230 points to trade at 2.780 at the close. Costa Group Holdings Ltd (ASX: CGC ) added 5.30% or 0.210 points to end at 4.170 and Beach Energy Ltd (ASX: BPT ) was up 4.81% or 0.090 points to 1.960 in late trade.

Biggest losers included Syrah Resources Ltd (ASX: SYR ), which lost 9.00% or 0.086 points to trade at 0.870 in late trade. Ardent Leisure Ltd (ASX: ALG ) declined 8.77% or 0.100 points to end at 1.040 and Technology One Ltd (ASX: TNE ) shed 7.02% or 0.580 points to 7.680.

Declining stocks outnumbered rising ones by 645 to 628 and 382 ended unchanged on the Sydney Stock Exchange.

The S&P/ASX 200 VIX , which measures the implied volatility of S&P/ASX 200 options, was down 1.90% to 12.781 a new 1-month low.

In commodities trading, Gold Futures for August delivery was down 0.13% or 1.75 to $1395.15 a troy ounce. Meanwhile, Crude oil for delivery in August fell 0.14% or 0.08 to hit $56.99 a barrel, while the August Brent oil contract fell 0.14% or 0.09 to trade at $64.36 a barrel.

AUD/USD was down 0.03% to 0.6920, while AUD/JPY unchanged 0.00% to 74.27.

The US Dollar Index Futures was up 0.10% at 96.232.

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