Miners have helped the Australian share market higher and energy companies are enjoying better fortunes after the first two hours of trading.
The S&P/ASX200 benchmark index was higher by 26.9 points, or 0.45 per cent, to 5886.3 points at 1200 AEST on Monday.
The All Ordinaries index was up 23.1 points, or 0.38 per cent, to 6062.0.
The materials sector, which includes the miners, increased 1.93 per cent.
BHP rose 2.1 per cent to $37.32, Rio Tinto was up 3.54 per cent to $103.40 and Fortescue gained 1.23 per cent to $17.55.
Energy was higher by 1.36 per cent following news of the Morrison government plan to invest $211 million in building domestic fuel storage facilities, while backing local refineries to stay open.
The plan aims to secure Australia’s long-term fuel supply, while keeping prices low and creating 1000 new jobs, and will form part of the government’s 2020/21 budget on October 6.
Beach Energy was one of the best movers among the big names on the market, up 1.91 per cent to $1.33.
Viva Energy rose 2.13 per cent to $1.55.
The momentum for energy comes despite BP’s warning that the pandemic will leave a lasting effect on global demand.
It has forecast that demand for coal, oil and natural gas is set to slow greatly in the longer term due to growth in renewable energy.
Meanwhile, Victoria has recorded its lowest number of coronavirus cases since June 26.
The state has recorded 35 new infections and seven deaths, as Melbourne takes its first tentative steps out of lockdown.
Premier Daniel Andrews has unveiled a $290 million funding package to help economic recovery.
The big banks were positive. ANZ increased 0.68 per cent to $17.65, the Commonwealth was up 0.21 per cent to $65.94, NAB climbed 1.16 per cent to $17.35 and Westpac rose 1.18 per cent to $17.01.
However, Macquarie Bank was down 4.32 per cent to $120.64 after it said its first half result was expected to drop by about 35 per cent on the first half of the previous financial year.
The pandemic, government support for economies, and impacts on foreign exchange were among the reasons.
US markets closed little changed on Friday. The Nasdaq slid while the S&P 500 and Dow Jones closed a little higher.
The recent sell-off in technology giants caused each of the three major Wall Street averages to record a second straight weekly decline.
The Aussie dollar was buying 72.78 US cents at 1200 AEST, the same value as at the close on Friday.