Local shares boosted by miners, banks

Simone Ziaziaris
(Australian Associated Press)

The Australian share market has held on to its early gains, with major banks and miners continuing to push the local bourse higher.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 stock index was up 0.53 per cent to 5,777 points at 1200 AEST on Wednesday, with the mining sector up 1.11 per cent following an overnight boost in commodity prices.

Rio Tinto rose 1.61 per cent to $69.91, BHP Billiton was up 1.62 per cent at $27.56, and Fortescue was trading 0.51 per cent stronger at $5.93.

Gold miner Newcrest was up more than one per cent after announcing it has resumed ore extraction from the second section of its Cadia East mine in NSW, where operations had remained suspended since an earthquake in April.

Commonwealth Bank led the major lenders, up 1.09 per cent, while Westpac grew 1.01 per cent, National Australia Bank climbed 0.94 per cent ANZ rose 1.04 per cent.

Oil prices lifted after OPEC forecast higher demand next year and Russia and Venezuela confirmed their commitment to a production-cutting deal to reduce the global crude glut.

The energy sector was mixed, with Origin Energy was up 1.93 per cent at $7.92, while Woodside Petroleum fell 0.35 per cent to $28.50 and Oil Search lost 0.59 per cent to $6.75.

Shares in aged care company Aveo Group slid to $2.47, down 2.76 per cent, following news of a possible second class action amid concerns of its alleged use of “unfair and unconscionable” contracts.

The Australian dollar dipped slightly against the greenback, trading at 80.35 US cents, from 80.37 US cents on Tuesday.

ON THE ASX AT 1200 AEST:

* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 30.6 points, or 0.53 per cent, at 5,777 points.

* The broader All Ordinaries index was up 28.5 points, or 0.49 per cent, at 5,834.9 points.

* The September SPI200 futures contract was up 30 points or 0.52 per cent at 5,775 points.

* National turnover was 1.24 billion securities traded worth $1.9 billion.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1200 AEST:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 80.36 US cents, from 80.37 US cents on Tuesday

* 88.43 Japanese yen, from 88.03 yen

* 67.05 euro cents, from 67.11 euro cents

* 60.40 British pence, from 60.92 pence

* 110.36 NZ cents, from 110.40 NZ cents

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 1200 AEST was $US1,332.11 per fine ounce, from $US1,326.29 per fine ounce on Tuesday.

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 1200 AEST:

* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 1.9506pct, from 1.915pct on Tuesday

* CGS 4.75pct April 2027, 2.6288pct, from 2.590pct

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* September 2017 10-year bond futures contract at 97.32 (implying a yield of 2.68pct), from 97.36 (2.64pct) on Tuesday

* September 2017 3-year bond futures contract at 97.96 (2.04pct), from 98.01 (1.99pct).

(*Bond market closes taken at 1630 AEST previous local session; currency closes taken from 1700 AEST previous local session)

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