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BHP falls amongst regulatory uncertainty

The market has today more than reversed yesterday’s gains, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) down 63 points early – led by Australia’s miners and banks.

Yesterday’s gains reflected the market’s confidence that the U.S. Federal Reserve would recognise the need to continue its bond-buying program until the US economy sees further improvement. As the Fed met last night however, hints were made that its easing efforts could be pulled back later this year, which has sent shares into a frenzy.

After seeing slight gains on the market yesterday on the back of higher commodity prices and a lower Australian dollar, BHP Billiton (ASX: BHP) is today trading at 2% lower in early trading, along with fellow miners Rio Tinto (ASX: RIO) and Fortescue Metals Group (ASX: FMG), which are down 2.2% and 3.9% respectively.

Yesterday’s news that BHP plans to offset its Navajo Coal Mine in New Mexico have been delayed would also be impacting on its share price today. As part of its strategy to cut costs, the company had made significant progress in finalizing a deal to sell the mine for US$85 million, however, due to regulatory uncertainty, investors are now asking the question as to whether the deal will progress.

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Motley Fool contributor Ryan Newman does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article.

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