RTTNews - The Australian market ended in negative territory on Tuesday following Wall Street cues where the major indices snapped the 4-day rally and ended flat.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 Index lost 0.46% or 20.30 points to close at 4,406, while the All-Ordinaries Index ended at 4,418, representing a loss of 16.70 points, or 0.38%.

Light sweet crude oil price for October delivery ended at $73.83 a barrel in electronic trading, down $0.54 from its previous close $74.37 a barrel in New York on Monday.

Woolworths, the biggest retailer in the country, has agreed to buy Danks Holdings, the second largest hardware distributor in the country, in an effort to expand into the hardware market. Also the company will team up with home-improvement chain in the U.S., Lowe's Co., to effectively challenge Wesfarmers Ltd, the leading retailer in the country.

Following the news, the share price of Woolworths gained 2.21%. However, Wesfarmers Ltd, which operates the Bunnings Stores in the country, slumped 5.74%.

Among other major retailers in the country, David Jones declined 2.51% and Harvey Norman lost 2.78%.

Metals and mining stocks ended weaker following drop in commodity prices in the international market. BHP Billiton declined 1%, Rio Tinto slipped 0.98%, Fortescue Metals fell 2.83%, Gindalbie Metals lost 1.83% and Oz Minerals shed 1.32%.

In energy space, Woodside Petroleum declined 1.73%, Santos lost 1.47% and Origin Energy fell 1.78%. However,Oil Search bucked the trend and surged up 4.31%.

Mixed trading was witnessed among bank stocks. ANZ Bank edged down 0.05%, Commonwealth Bank of Australia slipped 0.67% and Westpac Banking declined 1.35%. However, National Australia Bank bucked the trend and ended in positive territory with a gain of 1.12%.

Gold stocks also ended mixed. While Newcrest Mining fell 1.81%, Lihir Gold gained 2.81% and Sino Gold Mining advanced 0.84%.

In the U.S., stocks snapped the 4-day rally and ended flat with the major averages closing on opposite sides of the unchanged mark. Optimism about the growth prospects was partly offset by comments from economist Nouriel Roubini, who said that he sees a big risk of a double recession. While the Dow closed up by 3.32 points or 0.03% at 9,509, the Nasdaq slipped by 2.92 points or 0.1% to 2,018 and the S&P 500 fell by 0.56 points or 0.1% percent to 1,026.

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