Aust stocks extend losses at noon

The Australian sharemarket extended its losses at noon.

The Australian sharemarket extended its losses at noon despite strong gains on Wall Street after Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen was dovish about the US economy's recovery.

At 12.05pm (AEDT), the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index fell 26.2 points, or 0.49 per cent, to 5,368.6 points while the broader All Ordinaries index lost 26.8 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 5,376.2 points.

The Fed chair's comments, in a speech in Chicago, underlined that unemployment was still a big challenge for the economy and that the Fed would maintain its extraordinary measures until the jobless rate fell a lot more.

"The recovery still feels like a recession to many Americans, and it also looks that way in some economic statistics," she said.

Locally, in economic news on Tuesday, Reserve Bank of Australia holds its monthly board meeting to make its interest rate decision.

Locally, no major economic or equities news is expected.

However, Apache Energy regional vice-president for Australia and managing director, Faron Thibodeaux, is scheduled to speak at CEDA a lunch.

In Australia, the market yesterday closed lower, weighed down by weaker commodity prices and a stronger Australian dollar.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 26.7 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 5,350.1.