Flat start for ASX after poor NAB result

Stock prices were flat in early trade on the Australian share market after a good lead from US markets.

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark index was higher by 7.7 points, or 0.15 per cent, at 5250.3 points after the first 15 minutes of trade on Monday.

The All Ordinaries index was 15.9 points higher, or 0.3 per cent, at 5,316.6 points.

The higher index did not include better fortunes for the big four banks, however.

The financial sector was down an average 1.15 per cent.

NAB shares have been suspended from trading as the bank plans a $3.5 billion capital raising.

The share price closed at $15.76 on Friday.

NAB also slashed its interim dividend to 30 cents as it announced half-year net profit was down 51.3 per cent to $1.31 billion and cash earnings fell by 51.4 per cent.

Information technology and healthcare were better performing sectors, with average increases of 1.99 per cent and 1.54 per cent respectively.

The US Dow Jones index finished Friday higher by 1.1 per cent, which has given some momentum to share trading.

The Australian dollar was buying 63.97 US cents at 1015 AEST, up from 63.56 US cents at Friday’s close.

The price of gold was $1724.12 an ounce.

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