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Australia Market extends gain for sixth straight session

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Australian stock market closed higher for a sixth straight session on Tuesday, 02 April 2019, in the wake of better-than-expected factory activity data in China and the United States, In addition, a progress in trade talks between the world's top two economies also boosted investor sentiment. Growth stocks like tech and consumer discretionary companies moved higher, while defensive stocks like telcos, utilities and property trusts lost ground. At closing bell, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index rose 25.40 points, or 0.41%, at 6,242.36 points, while the broader All Ordinaries added 28.14 points, or 0.45%, at 6,327.82.

Growth stocks like tech and consumer discretionary companies moved higher. Among tech stocks, Afterpay Touch was up 4.5% to hit another all-time high at A$23.40, Wisetech Global gained 2.5% to A$23.13, and Xero gained 3.4% to A$50.64. As for consumer discretionary stocks, TABCORP Holdings gained 3.2%, Aristocrat Leisure gained 2.8% and lotteries business Jumbo Interactive surged 12.8% to A$15.09 after Morgan Stanley initiated coverage with a bullish price target of A$20.

CSL gained 1.3% to A$200.21.

The energy sector was also a strong performer, after the price of oil increased more than 2% overnight. Santos, Oil Search, and Beach Energy were up between 1.6% and 2%.

Shares of materials and resources closed mixed, with BHP down 0.05% to A$39.03 and Rio Tinto fell 1.1% to A$98.43. Fortescue Metals gained 3% to A$7.65 after the iron ore miner said it would go ahead with its A$3.66 billion Iron Bridge magnetite project in Western Australia.

In economic news, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said that the total number of building approvals in Australia jumped a seasonally adjusted 19.1% on month to 17,074 in February, following the 2.5% gain in January.

Australia central bank sustains record low interest rate--The Board of the Reserve Bank of Australia at its meeting today (02 April 2019) decided to leave its benchmark interest rate unchanged at record low of 1.50 percent. The RBA said strong job data supports its decision to leave interest rates on hold.

CURRENCY: The Australian dollar was up against the U. S. dollar on Tuesday. The Australian dollar was quoted at $0.7109, down from $0.7125 on Monday.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, April 02 2019. 12:03 IST
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