SYDNEY, AAP – Consumer discretionaries have been the top stocks on a higher Australian market after gaming machine manufacturer Aristocrat revealed its first-half earnings.

Discretionaries were up 1.28 per cent after Aristocrat said its casinos business improved amid the pandemic and helped a net profit of $346 million.

Shares in the company were up 4.44 per cent to $39.00.

Materials shares, which include those of the miners, were up 0.75 per cent.

Iron ore prices fell but continue to be higher than $US200 per tonne.

Financials were up 0.24 per cent.

A good US lead from Friday has helped the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index higher by 31.9 points, or 0.45 per cent, to 7046.1 at 1200 AEST on Monday.

The All Ordinaries was up 36.5 points, or 0.50 per cent, to 7275.9 points.

The only shares lower were telecommunications and utilities, both by about 0.7 per cent.

Wall Street closed higher on Friday as signs of a rebounding economy overcame earlier concerns about inflation.

Energy providers Ampol and Viva received a boost from federal government funding to help refineries stay open.

The money will be shared between Ampol’s refinery in Brisbane and Viva Energy’s refinery in Geelong in Victoria.

Ampol shares were up 5.34 per cent to $27.31.

Viva shares were higher by 5.77 per cent to $2.10.

Crown Resorts has knocked back US private equity firm Blackstone’s takeover offer, saying the proposal “undervalues” Crown.

Blackstone had raised its offer to $8.2 billion, or $12.35 a share.

Crown is still mulling a merger proposal from rival Star.

Meanwhile, royal commissions into Crown continue in Victoria and Western Australia.

Shares were better by 0.99 per cent to $13.17.

Agribusiness Elders had a 40 per cent increase in first-half profit and raised its interim payout.

Crop protection and animal health products were drivers of a net profit after tax of $68.2 million.

Shareholders will gain a fully franked dividend of 20 cents per share.

Shares were down 2.94 per cent to $11.87.

The big miners were higher. Fortescue was best and rose 1.18 per cent to $23.06.

In banking, the big four were higher. The Commonwealth improved by 1.71 per cent to $98.24.

Macquarie Group traded ex-dividend was down 3.73 per cent to $152.43.

Market giant CSL had a rise of 0.17 per cent to $278.17.

The Australian dollar was buying 77.58 US cents at 1200 AEST, higher from 77.31 US cents at Friday’s close.