The ASX gained slightly on Friday, bolstered by the outcome of the Scottish referendum. Unfortunately, due to the poor performance of four large banks, the exchange is still down for the week, marking the fourth straight week of declines.
The S&P/ASX 200 rose 17.4 points or 0.32 percent to 5433.1 points on Friday, according to The Sydney Morning Herald. Overall, the index lost 1.8 percent for the week, marking its fourth straight week of declines. During the week, the four big banks in Australia fell considerably. However, banks regained support on Friday as Scotland voted against independence and the pound rallied. In mining, China’s ban on coal imports and the low price of iron ore hurt resource companies.
Junior iron ore producer Arrium (ASX:ARI) performed the worst of any stock on the ASX this week, losing 42.3 percent to $0.375 as iron prices remained near six-year lows. On Friday, the company lost 6.25 percent or $0.025. Northern Star (ASX:NST) fared almost as poorly, dropping 4.91 percent or $0.065 to trade at $1.260 on Friday. The company explores for and produces gold and other resources.
On the other side of the market, mid-tier copper producer, Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR) saw a bump in share price this week. The company traded 5.82 percent or $0.33 on Friday to trade at $6.00. Sandfire announced this week it would pay a maiden $0.10 per share dividend on the heels of strong 2014 financial results.