ASX closes lower as Westpac goes ex-dividend, miners fall

Mr Adler specialises in buying undervalued companies and said it was difficult to pick what catalyst would eventually spark a sell-off or a rally in a particular sector.

“I have not met anyone who can tell me what the catalyst was for technology companies to collapse and value companies to do well,” he said.

“By the time an individual thinks they have spotted the catalyst it is likely that the whole market has moved.  The opportunity in value is so great today that it should bring investors great rewards.”

The S&P/ASX 200 ended the day 19.5 points, or 0.3 per cent, lower at 6753 after a soft session. Mining companies dropped when the price of iron ore fell to a nine-month low. Fortescue Metals fell 2.1 per cent to $8.86 and BHP fell 0.2 per cent, but Rio Tinto ended the day 0.4 per cent higher at $93.36.

During Tuesday’s session, iron ore futures jumped 2.5 per cent. Iron ore futures in Singapore gained a larger 3.5 per cent to $US79.21 a tonne. The gains coincide with similar strength in Chinese steel futures in Shanghai on Tuesday. Rebar and hot-rolled coil contracts for January delivery rose 1.8 and 1.4 per cent respectively for the session.

And the spot price of pork in China continues to increase, up to new records of 52.3 renmimbi on Tuesday. Prices are soaring due to African Swine Flu, which has seen millions of pigs destroyed for quarantine reasons, and this is pushing up China’s inflation and putting pressure on the government to improve its trade relationship with the United States.


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