By Oliver Gray
Investing.com - The S&P/ASX 200 moved 20.80 points or 0.28% lower to 7,507.70 in early trade on Tuesday, following slight gains of 0.07% in the previous session as heavyweight miners slipped on weaker iron ore prices, while market participants looked ahead to the Reserve bank of Australia’s interest rate decision due later in the session.
In coronavirus news, Victoria reported 246 fresh locally acquired cases, with 90 of those linked to existing outbreaks. New South Wales confirmed 1220 cases today with health authorities expecting to reach a peak in cases over the next week as the state’s average for first dose vaccinations lifted to 74%.
Among stocks, Rio Tinto Ltd (ASX: RIO ) fell 1.83%, BHP Billiton Ltd (ASX: BHP ) slipped 1.3%, while Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (ASX: FMG ) dipped 2.53% as Iron ore prices fell 8.5% overnight, while Flight Centre Ltd (ASX: FLT ) added 5.43% Lynas Rare Earths Ltd (ASX: LYC ) lifted 3.38%
Later in the session, the Reserve Bank of Australia is set to formalize its asset tapering decision at its monthly meeting, with some analysts expecting policymakers to delay the move as domestic coronavirus infection rates surge and protracted lockdowns hinder economic activity.
In New Zealand, the NZX 50 added 20.49 points or 0.15%, extending fresh 8-month highs to 13320.52.
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