SYDNEY: Australian shares dropped 1.7 percent on Tuesday on a broad-based sell-off as renewed concerns about global growth, sinking oil prices and declining business confidence at home kept buyers at bay.
The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 90 points, the biggest drop in a week, to 5,321.8 at the close of trade. On Monday, the index rose 0.7 percent.
Energy stocks Sundance, Santos and Drillsearch took a beating as oil slumped to near 5-year lows while Qantas shares took off for a second straight session, rising to near 4-year highs. New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index ended up 0.25 percent or 13.6 points to finish the session at 5,542.9.