January 10, 2014 / 5:21 AM / in 4 years

Australia shares slip, resource stocks further hit by China data

(Updates to close)

SYDNEY, Jan 10 (Reuters) - Australian shares fell 0.2 percent on Friday, with resources stocks continuing to languish on weaker commodities prices and disappointing trade data from China, Australia’s biggest export market.

China’s export growth slowed more than expected in December due to a higher comparison base a year earlier and a clamp-down on speculative activities disguised as export deals, missing the official target on foreign trade.

Iron ore imports fell, though set a record-high for the full-year.

The S&P/ASX 200 index lost 12.0 points to 5,312.4, hovering 145-odd points below the 4-1/2 year high of 5,457.3 hit on Oct. 28.

The benchmark dipped 0.7 percent for the week, snapping three weeks of consecutive gains.

New Zealand’s benchmark NZX 50 index gained 1.0 percent to 4,864.4.

Reporting by Maggie Lu Yueyang; Editing by Kim Coghill

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