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Rising competition in the Australian 4G mobile sector is weighing on the share price of SingTel, which owns one of the major players in the country.
This morning, Sydney-listed TPG Telecom announced it successfully bid for a slice of mobile broadband from the government and would build its own 4G network.
The company, which has been one of the high-growth darlings of the Australian Stock Exchange for many years (up until a surprise profit warning last September), currently buys network access for its mobile products from Vodafone.
The other two incumbents are Telstra, the former government monopoly, and Optus, which is owned by Singapore Telecommunications.
SingTel shares are down 1.3 per cent at their lowest in about two-and-a-half months. That is enough of a drop to make them the worst performer in the benchmark Straits Times index, which is off 0.1 per cent.
Telstra shares are still getting walloped in Australia. The stock is down 7.4 per cent and facing one of its biggest one-day falls since its initial public offering in 1997. Shares had been down as much as 8.6 per cent.
Also suffering on the ASX is Vocus Communications, a smaller telecommunications provider that has also come under increasing competitive pressures in the broadband segment.