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ASX 200 lunch time report: Ramsay & Westpac lower, Appen higher

At lunch on Tuesday the S&P/ASX 200 index is on course to follow the lead of U.S. markets and post a small decline. At the time of writing the benchmark index is down almost 0.3% to 6,655.7 points.

Here’s what has been happening on the market today:

Ramsay shares sink lower.  

The Ramsay Health Care Limited (ASX: RHC) share price has dropped over 5% after the Paul Ramsay Foundation sold 22 million shares to institutional investors at $61.80 per share through a block trade. The Foundation will continue to hold approximately 21% of the issued share capital in the company following settlement.

Tech shares higher.

The Australian tech sector has been pushing higher on Tuesday despite the general market weakness. The likes of Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) and Nearmap Ltd (ASX: NEA) have recorded solid gains today, leading to the S&P/ASX 200 Info Tech defying the market and pushing 0.3% higher. Appen and Nearmap have both fallen heavily recently, which could mean bargain hunters are swooping in today.

Miners drop lower.

A pullback in commodity prices overnight has put pressure on the Australian mining sector on Tuesday. The shares of Iluka Resources Limited (ASX: ILU), New Hope Corporation Limited (ASX: NHC), and South32 Ltd (ASX: S32) are all deep in the red at lunch. This has led to the S&P/ASX 200 Resources index falling 0.8% today.

Bank shares mixed.

It has been a mixed day of trade for the big four banks. The National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB) share price has pushed 0.35% higher, whereas the Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) share price has dropped 0.2%. The rest of the big four are trading flat at lunch.

Best and worst performers.

The best performer on the benchmark index on Tuesday has been the Eclipx Group Ltd (ASX: ECX) share price with a gain of 5%. Its shares have pushed higher thanks to a broker upgrade on Monday. Whereas, the worst performer on the index has been the Ramsay Health Care share price with a 5.5% decline after the Paul Ramsay Foundation share sale.

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James Mickleboro owns shares of Westpac Banking. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of Nearmap Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Appen Ltd and National Australia Bank Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Nearmap Ltd. 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 Scott Phillips.

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