ACCC blocks Transurban deal; ASIC sues crypto exchange; Fonterra flags more price pain

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The share­mar­ket has extend­ed its ear­ly loss­es at mid­day, with bank­ing stocks among the worst hit, fol­low­ing still-hawk­ish rhetoric from the US Fed­er­al Reserve overnight.

The S&P/ASX 200 is 65 points, or 0.9 per cent, down at 7098.4, with all 11 sec­tors tilt­ing lower.

Com­mon­wealth Bank, NAB, ANZ and West­pac are all down between 1 per cent‑2 per cent. The tech, health care and ener­gy sec­tors are also down about 1 per cent.

In com­pa­ny news, Transur­ban has been blocked for the first time by reg­u­la­tors from acquir­ing a toll road in Aus­tralia, after the com­pe­ti­tion watch­dog ruled that it can­not pro­ceed with a bid for Melbourne’s East­Link toll road. Shares have dipped 2.5 per cent.

Fonterra’s ASX-list­ed share­hold­ers fund gained 2.3 per cent after the New Zealand dairy giant unveiled a full-year div­i­dend of 50¢ a share, includ­ing inter­im div­i­dend of 10¢ a share.

Among small-cap stocks, Anson Resources is among the best gain­ers, jump­ing 3.5 per cent fol­low­ing reports of “excep­tion­al geo­log­i­cal char­ac­ter­is­tics” at the explorer’s Green Riv­er Lithi­um Project in Utah, US.

Finan­cial ser­vices provider Thorn Group has gained 3.2 per cent after Bermu­da-based Somers put for­ward a revised $1.17 per share buy­out offer, fol­low­ing the sale of Thorn’s asset port­fo­lio to fel­low ASX-lis­ter Res­i­mac Group for $16.7 million.

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