(Updates to close)
SYDNEY, April 1 Australian shares slipped 0.1
percent on Tuesday, after resources recovered on the back of a
slight uptick in China's factory activity survey, while the
Reserve Bank of Australia kept rates on hold as widely
Activity in China's factory sector edged up slightly in
March, a government survey showed, though the figure is unlikely
to dispel concerns that the world's second-largest economy is
facing a slow first quarter.
Australia's central bank kept its main cash rate at a record
low of 2.5 percent, saying the outlook was for a period of
steady policy as the stimulus from past cuts percolated through
The S&P/ASX 200 index shed 5.6 points to 5,389.2 at
the close of trade. The benchmark added 0.5 percent on Monday
and rose 0.8 percent for the first quarter.
Prana Biotechnology Ltd lost nearly three-quarters
of its value after the company said its experimental drug to
treat Alzheimer's disease failed a mid-stage study, raising
doubts about the drug's future.
New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index slipped 0.3
percent or 17.5 points to finish the session at 5,122.5.
(Reporting by Thuy Ong; Editing by Eric Meijer)