Australian Market Modestly Higher On Wall Street Cues

By RTT News, 
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(RTTNews.com) - The Australian stock market is trading modestly higher on Tuesday, tracking cues from Wall Street where the major averages closed on a positive note overnight, extending recent gains.

Financial, mining, industrial and telecommunications stocks are higher. Healthcare stocks are declining, while energy and consumer discretionary stocks are mixed.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index is up 23.3 points or 0.4 percent at 5,487.3, after advancing to 5,496.3. The broader All Ordinaries index, which rose to 5,474.0, is currently up 22 points or 0.4 percent at 5,465.5.

Among bank stocks, ANZ Bank, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, National Australia Bank and Westpac (WBK) are rising 0.5 to 1 percent. Bendigo & Adelaide Bank and Bank of Queensland are up 1.2 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively.

Top miners BHP Billiton (BHP) and Rio Tinto (RIO) are rising 0.7 percent and 1 percent, respectively.

Henderson Group and Orora are up 2.7 percent and 2.5 percent, respectively. Fortescue Metals, Qantas Airways, Dexus Property Group, Arrium, Challenger and Toll Holdings are moving up 1.5 to 2 percent.

REA Group, Downer EDI, Federation Centres, Investa Office Fund, Woodside Petroleum, Incitec Pivot, Mineral Resources and Iluka Resources are all higher by over 1 percent.

Meanwhile, James Hardie Industries, Ramsay Healthcare, ALS and Adelaide Brighton are trading weak, losing 1.3 to 2.7 percent.

Shares of retailers Pacific Brands and The Reject Shop are plunging nearly 10 percent after the companies cut their earnings forecasts.

On the economic front, the data on home loans and job advertisements for April and May, respectively, will be out during the day. Home loans are tipped to add 0.1 percent after falling 0.0 percent in March. Job adds climbed 2.2 percent on month in April.

According to a survey by the NAB, business confidence and business conditions in May came in with scores of 7 and minus 1, respectively, compared to previous months readings of 6 and 0, respectively.

In the currency market, the Australian dollar opened higher against the U.S. dollar. In early trades, the local unit was quoting at US$0.9355, up from last Friday's close of US$0.9337.

On Wall Street, stocks ended modestly higher on Monday, with upbeat economic data from Japan and China aiding sentiment.

The major averages all closed in positive territory but off their best levels of the day. The Dow inched up 18.8 points or 0.1 percent to 16,943.1, the Nasdaq rose 14.8 points or 0.3 percent to 4,336.2 and the S&P 500 edged up 1.8 points or 0.1 percent to 1,951.3.

Major European markets also closed higher on Monday. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 index, the French CAC 40 index and the German DAX index all edged up by 0.2 percent.

U.S. crude oil surged to end at a more than three-month high on Monday, amid some significant signs of an economic recovery in the U.S. after data last week showed the economy to have added more jobs than expected in May.

Crude for July delivery ended up $1.75 or 1.7 percent at $104.41 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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This article appears in: News Headlines

Referenced Stocks: BXRBY , FSUGY , JHX , NABZY , WOPEY

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