July 10, 2018 / 7:02 AM / a year ago

Australian shares run out of puff as banks slip; NZ falls

* Aussie shares end three sessions of consecutive gains

* Banks account for most of the losses

* Materials stocks firm on higher commodities

* NZ extends losses (Updates to close)

July 10 (Reuters) - Australian shares’ winning run petered out on Tuesday after an initial jump as banks dragged, though offsetting gains in materials stocks curbed losses on the index.

The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.4 percent or 27.9 points to 6,258.1 at the close of trade. The benchmark added 0.2 percent on Monday.

Banks led Tuesday’s declines on the main index, reversing its sharp gains in the last three sessions. The Australian financial index dipped 1 percent, its biggest fall in more than two weeks.

Top lender Commonwealth Bank of Australia dropped 2.2 percent, and was the biggest drag on the benchmark, while Westpac Banking Corp slid 1 percent.

Consumer stocks were also negative, with retailer Wesfarmers Ltd dipping 1.3 percent. Treasury Wine Estates , the world’s biggest listed winemaker, slid 2.4 percent.

But higher base metal and iron ore prices boosted materials stocks, braking the benchmark’s slide.

Index heavyweight BHP firmed 1.1 percent to a near two-month high, while Rio Tinto Ltd rose 0.9 percent.

Across the Tasman Sea, New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index fell 0.4 percent or 38.72 points to finish the session at 9,022.93.

Utilities and telecommunications stocks set the bearish tone, with Spark New Zealand Ltd falling 1.7 percent while Meridian Energy Ltd slipping 0.9 percent. (Reporting by Aditya Soni in Bengaluru; Editing by Eric Meijer)

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