The share market has closed lower in the wake of falls on nearly all major world markets.
Lonsec senior client adviser Michael Heffernan said local shares opened lower and stayed there, with falls posted in all sectors.
"When you see nearly all overseas markets in the red, you're not starting on the right foot when you get that sort of thing," Mr Heffernan said.
Economic data out of the US overnight was also weaker than expected, which added to the dour sentiment among investors.
The Australian market's downward trend of late has corresponded with a weaker Australian dollar, Mr Heffernan said, which has prompted a pullout by overseas investors.
Among the banks, Commonwealth Bank dropped 39 cents to $75.81, ANZ shed 21 cents to $31.22, National Australia Bank slipped 15 cents to $32.68 and Westpac dumped 17 cents at $32.29.
A rise in commodity prices overnight, including iron ore, failed to boost most of the big miners.
BHP Billiton dropped 34 cents to $33.65, Rio Tinto fell 32 cents to $58.94, while Fortescue Metals firmed nine cents to $3.55.
Online accommodation booking company Wotif.com jumped 20 cents, or 6.5 per cent, to $3.29 after the competition watchdog gave a $700 million takeover bid by global giant Expedia the green light.
* On Thursday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 36.4 points, or 0.68 per cent, at 5,297.7 points.
* The broader All Ordinaries index was down 36 points, or 0.67 per cent, at 5,298.5 points.
* The December share price index futures contract was 39 points lower at 5,283 points, with 28,825 contracts traded.
* The price of gold in Sydney at 1700 AEST was $US1,217.60 per fine ounce, up $US9.70 on Wednesday's closing price of $US1,207.90.
* National turnover was 1.47 billion securities worth $3.52 billion.