The Australian share market has crept marginally higher after three tumultuous days during which most of the gains it made this year were all but wiped out.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 8.8 points, or 0.13 per cent, at 6,716.9 at 1030 AEDT despite falls on the energy, industrial, financial, telco and property indices.
The broader All Ordinaries index rose 8.7 points, or 0.13 per cent, to 6,799.4 after overseas stock markets stabilised overnight after days of losses.
IG market analyst Kyle Rodda says the absence of hard-hitting coronavirus news was likely behind the relative calm on global markets overnight but traders remained on edge.
“The situation remains fraught with danger, as the number of new cases of the coronavirus outside of China begins to exceed those within China,” he said.
Consumer staple A2 Milk was an early riser, surging 8.73 per cent to $16.31 on China demand for its infant formula.
Air New Zealand rose two cents to $2.34 after slashing capacity in Asia to deal with the coronavirus fallout on travel.
Buy now, pay later operator Afterpay was winning over investors after half an hour of trade on Thursday when its shares rose 92 cents, or 2.56 per cent, to $36.89 after reporting a bigger loss.
Investors will be watching for any coronavirus news, data on new private capital expenditure for the December quarter of 2019 and expected expenditure.
Australian investors on Thursday will be watching for coronavirus news as well as companies earnings reports and data on new private capital expenditure for the December quarter of 2019 – and expected expenditure.
The Australian dollar was buying 65.46 US cents at 1030 AEDT on Thursday, down from 65.88 US cents on Wednesday.