* Energy stock sees worst session in 4-1/2 months
* Woodside Petroleum sees worst day in eight months
* NZ50 marks fourth consecutive week of losses (Updates to close)
Feb 19 (Reuters) - Australian shares had their worst session in three weeks on Friday, tracking losses in Asian peers, as a worse-than-expected rise in weekly U.S. jobless claims tempered hopes for a quick economic recovery.
The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 1.34% to 6,793.8 points, as weaker oil and gold prices weighed on commodity-linked stocks. The benchmark was down 0.19% for the week.
Asian stocks pulled back from all-time peaks on the back of underwhelming U.S. data and as yields on longer-dated bonds rose.
“The momentum of the global recovery buy-everything trade looks to be flagging in the near term, nudged along by worse than expected U.S. jobless claims data overnight,” said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst, Asia Pacific at OANDA.
Energy stocks saw their worst session in 4-1/2 months, slumping 3.6% as oil prices dropped.
Woodside Petroleum shed 5.3%, its worst day in eight months, while peer Santos gave up 3.4%.
Miners had their worst day in three weeks. Still, the sub-index ended the week 2.2% higher, helped by a slew of upbeat earnings and forecasts from heavyweights Rio Tinto , BHP and Fortescue.
Gold prices sank to a seven-month low as rising U.S. Treasury yields eroded the bullion’s appeal, driving gold stocks 1.1% lower.
Northern Star Resources fell 2.1% to hit its lowest in over 10-1/2 months, while Newcrest Mining lost 0.5%.
Financials also fielded losses, with three of the “Big Four” banks closing in the red.
Bucking the trend, technology stocks inched higher after Morgan Stanley bumped up sector heavyweight Afterpay’s price target by 25%.
New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index closed 0.67% lower at 12,548.63 points, marking its fourth consecutive week of losses. Retirement village operator Ryman Healthcare was the top loser on the benchmark. (Reporting by Harish Sridharan in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)