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Australia: Shares rise more than 1 per cent in pre-Christmas rally


[SYDNEY] Australian shares rose 1.3 per cent in a shortened Christmas Eve session on Thursday.

The S&P/ASX 200 index gained 65.8 points to 5,207.6 at the close of trade, its seventh straight day of gains and its longest winning streak since late January. It added 0.5 per cent on Wednesday.

Most analysts expect the market to continue the positive trend into the New Year.

New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.5 per cent or 30.2 points to finish the session at a record high of 6,225.5.