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Miners push Australia shares higher ahead of cenbank decision

05/03/2021 | 08:59pm EDT

May 4 (Reuters) - Australian shares traded higher on Tuesday on the back of gains from iron ore miners, further aided by wide expectations the central bank will keep its cash rate at a record low despite a solid economic recovery and a housing boom.

The S&P/ASX 200 index rose as much as 0.25% to 7,046.30 as at 0030 GMT.

The Reserve Bank of Australia in a meeting later in the day is expected to hold its cash rate at a record low of 0.1%, a Reuters poll showed, even as a massive monetary stimulus and fiscal support has led to a speedier economic recovery and boosted the jobs market and consumer spending.

Heavyweight miners were the top boosts to the benchmark, jumping as much as 2%, with iron ore giants BHP Group and Rio Tinto advancing 2.2% and 1.8%, respectively.

Among gold miners, De Grey Mining and Pantoro were the top gainers, soaring 8.6% and 4.9%, respectively.

Energy index rose 1.5% after oil prices gained more than a percent overnight on signs of strong rebound in the United States and China.

Among losers, technology stocks fell 0.78% after the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite dropped half a percent overnight due to losses in blue-chip tech companies.

Aussie tech companies like WiseTech Global and Afterpay slipped about 1.9% and 0.9%, respectively.

Banking stocks were down 0.3%, with Bank of Queensland and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank leading the declines.

Three of the "Big Four" banks traded in red, while Westpac Banking Corp jumped as much as 0.7%, extending gains into a second day after it reported an over three-fold jump in its first-half cash earnings.

In New Zealand, the benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose as much as 0.3% to 12,806.39, marking their fifth consecutive session of gains.

Top gainers were Mainfreight, up 1.74%, followed by Genesis Energy and Spark New Zealand, which added about 1.5% each.

(Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)

ę Reuters 2021
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AFTERPAY LIMITED 4.21% 131.54 End-of-day quote.11.47%
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR / US DOLLAR (AUD/USD) 0.02% 0.72943 Delayed Quote.-6.01%
BANK OF QUEENSLAND LIMITED 0.66% 9.11 End-of-day quote.17.70%
BENDIGO AND ADELAIDE BANK LIMITED 1.74% 9.35 End-of-day quote.0.32%
BHP GROUP -0.72% 38.38 End-of-day quote.-9.55%
DE GREY MINING LIMITED 0.99% 1.025 End-of-day quote.0.99%
GENESIS ENERGY LIMITED -2.05% 3.34 End-of-day quote.-7.86%
LONDON BRENT OIL 0.27% 77.48 Delayed Quote.44.45%
MAINFREIGHT LIMITED 1.47% 95.3 End-of-day quote.37.12%
NASDAQ COMP. 1.04% 15052.243848 Real-time Quote.14.42%
PANTORO LIMITED 2.33% 0.22 End-of-day quote.0.00%
RIO TINTO PLC 0.13% 4847.5 Delayed Quote.-11.19%
S&P/ASX 200 -0.43% 7339.6 Real-time Quote.10.78%
SPARK NEW ZEALAND LIMITED -0.21% 4.75 End-of-day quote.1.06%
WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION 0.64% 25.07 End-of-day quote.29.43%
WISETECH GLOBAL LIMITED 2.82% 54.34 End-of-day quote.76.72%
WTI 0.20% 73.411 Delayed Quote.46.78%
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