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Aust shares weaker at noon

The Australian share market has driven further into the red with weakness across all sectors at midday.

At noon on Tuesday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 was down 30.3 points or 0.53 per cent at 5,689.9 points.

Australian shares were unable to overcome early morning losses with the only glimpse of respite the financials sector, up marginally by 0.02 per cent, with the risk of technology disruption still dampening sentiment.

The four big banks were mixed with National Australia Bank down 0.26 per cent while Westpac, ANZ and the Commonwealth Bank were trading higher between 0.1 per cent and 0.59 per cent.

The consumer staple sector was trading more than one per cent lower with stocks in JB Hi-Fi down 0.86 per cent and Harvey Norman trading 0.53 per cent lower.

During the morning the latest ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence Index showed a drop of 0.5 per cent last week, with high household debt and rising energy costs weighing on confidence.

The mining sector was down with Rio Tinto shedding 0.86 per cent as the bidding war for its NSW coal assets seemingly came to an end, with Rio backing a $US2.69 billion bid by China's Yancoal over a rival Glencore offer.

And energy stocks were lower despite a tick up in global oil futures prices overnight, with concerns of oversupply still weighing on the market.

In company news, vitamin maker Blackmores fell 3.26 per cent to $90.89 after it confirmed the departure of long-time chief executive Christine Holgate, who will leave in September to take over as CEO of Australia Post.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar is still stronger against the US dollar on the back of a weaker than expected durable goods orders in the US.

The local currency was trading at 75.81 US cents at 1200 AEST on Tuesday, up from 75.76 US cents on Monday.

ON THE ASX at 1200 AEST :

* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was down 30.3 points, or 0.53 per cent, at 5,689.9 points.

* The broader All Ordinaries index was down 28.9 points, or 0.5 per cent, at 5,729.5 points.

* The SPI200 futures contract was down 35 points, or 0.62 per cent, at 5,631 points.

* National turnover was 1.01 billion shares worth $1.63 billion just after noon on Tuesday.