The Australian share market has opened lower, pulled back by several large companies trading ex-dividend.
At 8.17am, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was 22.5 points, or 0.51 per cent, lower at 4347.6 points while the broader All Ordinaries index had dipped 21.0 points, or 0.48 per cent, at 4372.8 points.
On the ASX 24, the September share price index futures contract eased four points to 4326 points, with 6114 contracts traded.
IG Markets market analyst Cameron Peacock said the market was lower on the back of several companies - Telstra, Commonwealth Bank, UGL and JB Hi-Fi - trading ex-dividend.
“The market’s pretty square when you consider that to be the fact,” Mr Peacock said.
On Wall street on Friday, the benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average reached its highest level since the last days of 2007 as Apple shares hit a new all-time high following reports that it was nearing the launch of a new iPhone model and a reduced-size iPad.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 25.09 points, or 0.19 per cent, to 13,275.20 points while the broader S&P 500 index added 2.65 points, or 0.19 per cent, to 1418.16 points.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq index gained 14.20 points, or 0.46 per cent, to 3076.59 points.
On the local market at 8.24am, in the resources sector, BlueScope Steel was 0.75 cents higher at 40.75 cents as it said it expected its financial performance to improve in the year ahead, after posting a $1.04 billion loss in the 12 months to June.
Global miner BHP Billiton was 24 cents richer at $33.24, and Rio Tinto descended 45 cents to $54.90.
In the financial services sector, Challenger was seven cents weaker at $3.78 after volatile investment markets pushed the company’s full year profit down 43 per cent.
Health insurer nib shed one cent to $1.63 after it posted a steady profit result and forecast a similar performance in the year ahead.
Among the major banks, Commonwealth Bank was $2.56 lower at $54.79, National Australia Bank had dumped two cents to $24.61, Westpac had sagged three cents to $24.47, and ANZ had given away 11 cents to $24.50.
Bendigo and Adelaide Bank reversed 11 cents to $8.58 as its full year profit fell 43 per cent.National turnover at 8.34am was 406.1 million shares worth $1.51 billion, with 390 stocks up, 189 down and 262 unchanged.
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