The S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) resumed its 2016 descent today, falling 0.7%.

Here’s a quick recap:

  • S&P/ASX 200 (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) down 0.7%
  • ALL ORDINARIES (Index: ^AXAO) (ASX: XAO) down 0.8%
  • AUD/USD at US 69.07 cents
  • Iron Ore at US$40.20 according to The Metal Bulletin
  • Gold at US$1,092.03 an ounce
  • Brent oil at US$28.25 a barrel

The local sharemarket got off to a slow start, falling hard after losses on international markets on Friday, but recovered slightly before the close of trade. Plunging oil prices saw energy shares hit hard.

The S&P/ASX 200 Energy (Index: ^XEJ) (ASX: XEJ) index fell 3.5% today and is down 12.1% for the year so far. Leading the charge lower were shares of Santos Ltd (ASX: STO), Sundance Energy Australia Ltd (ASX: SEA) and Oil Search Limited (ASX: OSH) – falling 16%, 8.5% and 5%, respectively.

Magellan Financial Group Ltd (ASX: MFG) and Henderson Group plc (ASX: HGG) fell 6.2% and 4.75%, respectively.

Among the ASX’s gainers were Metcash Limited (ASX: MTS) (up 7.6%), Woolworths Limited (ASX: WOW) (up 4.6%) and Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) (up 2%). The catalyst behind the jump in their share prices was the announcement by Woolworths to sell its Home Improvement business.

The share prices of Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) and UGL Limited (ASX: UGL) rose 6.5% and 5%, respectively.

Here are Monday’s top stories:

Will the market CRASH in 2016?

With the ASX flirting with 5,000, some experts are predicting a market crash. Discover our Foolish experts' advice on what YOU should do in the event of a crisis -- simply click here for your FREE copy of our newly updated report, "What to Do When the Sharemarket Crashes". Click here, it's FREE!.


Forget BHP and Woolworths. This "dirt cheap" company is growing like gangbusters, and trading on a 5.6% dividend yield, FULLY FRANKED (8% gross). With interest rates set to stay at these low levels for years to come, for hungry investors, including SMSFs, this ASX company could be the "holy grail" of dividend plays for 2016.

Enter your email below to discover the name, code and a full investment analysis in our brand-new FREE report, “The Motley Fool’s Top Dividend Stock for 2016.”

By clicking this button, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. We will use your email address only to keep you informed about updates to our website and about other products and services we think might interest you. You can unsubscribe from Take Stock at anytime. Please refer to our">Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information.

Motley Fool writer/analyst Owen Raszkiewicz has a financial interest in Woolworths. Owen welcomes your feedback on Google plus (see below), LinkedIn or you can follow him on Twitter @ASXinvest.

Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.