Oct 4 (Reuters) - Australian shares rose more than 2% on
Tuesday to mark their biggest intraday jump since Jan. 28,
tracking a strong performance on Wall Street, even as domestic
investors braced for another half-point interest rate hike later
in the day.
As of 2340 GMT, the S&P/ASX 200 index was up 2.2% at
6,596.8 points. The benchmark closed 0.3% lower on Monday.
Major indexes on Wall Street rallied overnight, as U.S.
Treasury yields tumbled on weaker-than-expected manufacturing
data, increasing the appeal of stocks at the start of the year's
Australian mining stocks jumped as much as 3.1% to
hit their highest level since Sept. 21.
Mining heavyweights Rio Tinto and BHP Group
gained more than 3% each.
Gold explorers also recorded gains, surging 4.9% to
hit their highest in nearly three weeks, benefiting from higher
Newcrest Mining jumped as much as 4.1% to hit a
two-week high, while Northern Star Resources hit levels
not seen since mid-August.
Sayona Mining climbed 8.9% after the miner
announced plans to fast-track its lithium operations in its
project in Quebec, Canada.
Later in the day, the Reserve Bank of Australia is expected
to increase borrowing costs further than previously thought in
its most aggressive tightening cycle since the 1990s.
Over 70% of economists surveyed by Reuters predicted the RBA
would hike its cash rate by 50 basis points to 2.85%, with the
rest forecasting a smaller 25 basis-point hike.
Financials rallied 2.4% and could record their best
day since late-June, if they hold on to the gains. Shares in the
so-called "Big Four" banks rose between 2.2% and 3.1%.
Meanwhile, the Australian government said resources and
energy export earnings are forecast to jump 7% to a record A$450
billion ($290 billion) this fiscal year, bolstered by soaring
coal and gas prices.
New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index was up 1.1%
at 11082.52 points.
(Reporting by Harish Sridharan in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry