The Australian share market has closed at a four-week high after investors decided it was time to buy back into beaten-down banks, and the major miners and energy stocks made solid gains.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 77.4 points, or 1.29 per cent, at 6,094.0 points at 1630 AEST, while the broader All Ordinaries index was up 75.7 points, or 1.23 per cent, at 6,205.3 points.
Shaw and Partners senior client adviser Craig Sidney said gains in energy and mining stocks helped boosted the local bourse on Friday, but the charge ahead was led by the banks.
“The banks have been hit quite hard recently so it’s just a bit of recovery,” Mr Sidney said.
He said the banks had been sold off recently because of concerns over the housing market and weak credit growth.
“I just think it’s a bit of a bounce back, probably a bit of value in that sector,” he said.
In the banking sector, Commonwealth Bank jumped 2.3 per cent to $68.98, National Australia Bank added 0.8 per cent to $26.16, Westpac improved 2.2 per cent to $27.90, and ANZ found 1.8 per cent at $26.68.
Mr Sidney said Woodside Petroleum’s announcement that it has started additional liquefied natural gas production at its onshore facility near Onslow in Western Australia had helped lift energy stocks.
Woodside rose 1.6 per cent to $34.27, and Santos gained 2.7 per cent to $5.98.
A higher iron ore price and recent announcements on capital expenditure boosted the miners.
Rio Tinto ascended 1.3 per cent to $85.70, and Fortescue Metals strengthened 1.3 per cent to $4.71.
Global giant BHP Billiton picked up 18 cents, or 0.5 per cent, to $33.56.
BHP on Friday announced plans to spend $3.9 billion on developing its majority-owned South Flank iron ore mine in the central Pilbara region of Western Australia.
Liver cancer treatment developer Sirtex Medical surged $1.36, or 4.6 per cent, to $31.00 after it accepted a $1.87 billion takeover bid from China’s CDH Genetech after another suitor, Varian Medical Systems of the US, declined to match or beat CDH’s offer.
Meanwhile, the Australian dollar eased against the US dollar after the US Federal Reserve lifted interest rates and Australia’s central bank shows no immediate sign of lifting rates here.
The Aussie was trading at 74.57 US cents at 1700 AEST on Friday, from 75.53 US cents on Thursday.
ON THE ASX:
* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 closed up 77.4 points, or 1.29 per cent, at 6,094 points
* The broader All Ordinaries index was up 75.7 points, or 1.23 per cent, at 6,205.3 points
* The SPI200 futures contract was up 74 points, or 1.23 per cent, at 6,099 points
* National turnover was 3.6 billion securities traded worth $10.4 billion
CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1700 AEST:
One Australian dollar buys:
* 74.57 US cents, from 75.53 on Thursday
* 82.60 Japanese yen, from 83.11 yen
* 64.46 euro cents, from 63.92 euro cents
* 56.34 British pence, from 56.35 pence
* 107.48 NZ cents, from 107.38 cents
The spot price of gold in Sydney at 1700 AEST was $US1,298.97 per fine ounce, from $US1,302.86 per fine ounce on Thursday.
BOND SNAPSHOT AT 1630 AEST:
* CGS 4.50 per cent May 2021, 2.1219pct, unchanged
* CGS 4.75pct May 2028, 2.6956pct, unchanged
Sydney Futures Exchange prices:
* June 2018 10-year bond futures contract at 97.2925 (implying a yield of 2.7075pct), from 97.2725 (implying a yield of 2.7275pct) on Thursday
* June 2018 3-year bond futures contract at 97.85 (2.15pct), from 97.825 (2.175pct).
(*Bond market closes taken at 1630 AEST previous local session; currency closes taken from 1700 AEST previous local session)