Aust stocks pare losses at noon

Local market recovers slightly as RBA minutes reveal bank open to further rate cuts.

The Australian stock market pared heavy early losses to sit almost 0.4% lower at noon after opened 1% lower after Reserve Bank of Australia board minutes revealed the bank was open to further rate cuts.

At 1205 AEST, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index fell 0.37%  to 5,093.5 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index lost 0.38% to 5,083 points.

Poor performances on Wall Street overnight also weighed on the market.

IG market analyst Evan Lucas said "the mood on the floors at the moment is one of tense anticipation as we have just seen the first four day losing streak in the US this year".

Financials were mixed, with two of the big four banks in the red.

Commonwealth Bank fell 0.32% to $70.92, while ANZ Banking Group added 0.68% to $29.64.

National Australia Bank increased 0.92% to $31.65 after posting a slight lift in third-quarter profit and warning weak confidence continues to challenge business banking.

Westpac Banking Corporation fell 0.43% to $31.435.

Investment bank Macquarie Group lost 0.38% to $44.01.

In the insurance sector, QBE dropped 5.05% to $16.17 after posting a steep fall in first-half profit, Insurance Australia Group fell 0.94% to $5.815 and Suncorp fell 0.4% to $12.42.

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