(Corrects 10th paragraph to remove extraneous Reuters instrument code)
* Financials pull down ASX 200
* Market factors help gold stocks, safe-haven plays
* Domino’s Pizza shares drop on lawsuit
* NZ benchmark ends at another record
June 25 (Reuters) - Australian shares closed slightly lower on Tuesday in thin trading as caution prevailed ahead of a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping late this week.
The S&P/ASX 200 index slipped 0.1% to 6,658. On Monday, it rose 0.2%.
Anxiety among investors about the U.S.-China talks at the G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan was not tempered by media reports saying Trump would be content with “any outcome” from the coming meeting.
Later on Tuesday, more dovish talk was expected from the U.S. Federal Reserve, with five policymakers including Chairman Jerome Powell having speaking engagements.
That pushed lower Treasury yields and the dollar, but gold prices benefited from safe-haven bets.
Australia’s gold stocks gained on Tuesday as the underlying asset strengthened, with Saracen Mineral Holdings and St Barbara finishing among the top advancers, up 6.6% and 5.6%, respectively.
The mining index pared earlier gains to finish 0.1% higher. Gains in BHP Group and Rio Tinto shares, up 0.6% and 0.1% respectively, helped the sub-index end the day higher.
However, declines in the financial sector erased gains elsewhere.
Australia’s ‘Big Four’ banks were the biggest contributors to losses, falling between 0.2% and 0.8%.
Shares of Domino’s Pizza Enterprises were the third-biggest decliners on the benchmark index after a law firm filed a class-action lawsuit against it for Australian employees alleging underpayment.
The fast-food chain’s shares slumped 7.23%, reaching a four-year low.
New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index closed at a record high. It gained 0.3% to end at 10,418.29.
Dairy firm a2 Milk was the top gainer on the index, advancing 2.7%. (Reporting by Renju Jose and Rushil Dutta in Bengaluru; Editing by Richard Borsuk)