The S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) was on form again last week and climbed to a new record high. The benchmark index finished the shortened week 56.6 points or 0.8% higher at 7,368.9 points.
Unfortunately, not all shares were able to climb higher with the market. Here’s why these were the worst performing ASX 200 shares over the period:
Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST)
The Northern Star share price was the worst performer on the ASX 200 last week with a disappointing 13.9% decline. Investors were selling Northern Star and other gold miners after a sharp pullback in the gold price. Traders sold off the precious metal after the US Federal Reserve pulled forward its rate hike plans. For the same reason, Newcrest Mining Ltd (ASX: NCM), Ramelius Resources Limited (ASX: RMS), and Westgold Resources Ltd (ASX: WGX) all recorded declines of at least 8.2% last week.
OZ Minerals Limited (ASX: OZL)
The OZ Minerals share price wasn’t far behind with a sizeable 12.2% decline over the four days. A sharp decline in copper prices last week appears to have been behind this decline. Copper prices came under pressure initially due to concerns that Chinese authorities were going to try to curb a recent rally in commodity prices. A strengthening US dollar late in the week also weighed on prices.
Whitehaven Coal Ltd (ASX: WHC)
The Whitehaven Coal share price was out of form and tumbled 9% over the week. Investors sold off the coal miner’s shares after it downgraded its guidance. Whitehaven Coal revealed that it now expects FY 2021 production to be 20.4Mt. This compares to its previous guidance of 20.6Mt to 21.4Mt. One positive is that its cost guidance remains unchanged for FY 2021.
Austal Limited (ASX: ASB)
The Austal share price was a poor performer, losing 8.1% of its value over the period. This was also caused by a guidance downgrade. The shipbuilder downgraded its earnings guidance due to COVID-19 related delays. Austal expects its earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) to be in the range of $112 million to $118 million in FY 2021. This is down from its previous EBIT guidance of $125 million.