Aust shares start lower amid caution

Australian shares have started lower after a mixed lead from Wall Street and cautious sentiment ahead of the federal government’s impending budget update later this week.

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark index was lower by 13 points, or 0.22 per cent, at 6020.60 points after the first 15 minutes of trade on Monday.

The All Ordinaries index was 12 points, or 0.2 per cent lower, at 6132.90.

Shares in energy companies and the heavyweight financial sector were trading lower, but there were gains among miners and technology shares.

US shares closed mixed on Friday as investors there weighed the prospect of more fiscal stimulus against fears of further business disruptions as COVID-19 cases rise.

In Australia, investors remain cautious ahead of key macroeconomic events and worries about a resurgence in coronavirus cases in New South Wales and Victoria.

The Australian dollar was trading at 69.99 US cents at 1015 AEST, slightly higher from 69.86 US cents at Friday’s close.

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