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Perth-based Iluka Resources plans to put its Hamilton mineral separation plant in Victoria on care-and-maintenance status, resulting in a $150 million pre-tax impairment charge in its half-year accounts.
Oil prices have ended down more than two per cent, hitting a 10-month low in volatile trade, as growing US production and reduced Chinese refinery activity fed mounting concern over the stubborn global crude glut.
About $29 billion has been wiped from the share market's value in its worst session of 2017, as lower oil prices and a souring outlook for commodities hit energy and mining stocks, and the negative sentiment infected the big banks.
Oil prices have fallen two per cent per cent, with Brent settling at seven-month lows and US crude at its cheapest level since September, after increased supply from several key producers overshadowed high compliance by OPEC and non-OPEC oil producers with a deal to cut global output.
The Australian dollar is down sharply against the greenback, falling back below 75 US cents, as the US dollar gains after an influential Federal Reserve official expressed confidence that rising wages would help revive domestic inflation.
Oil prices have fallen about one per cent to a seven-month low as market players see more signs that rising crude production in the United States, Libya and Nigeria have undercut OPEC-led efforts to support the market with output curbs.
Gold has fallen to a near five-week low as the US dollar rises after hawkish comments from a top Fed official, but uncertainty created by the start of talks on the terms of Britain's departure from the European Union prevented deeper losses.
The Australian share market has lifted as the major banks made gains but investors dumped retail stocks as a major acquisition by internet giant Amazon.com in the US ignited fears for the future of local bricks-and-mortar retailers.