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Australia: Shares slip but find some support from Qantas, utilities

Australian shares posted solid gains for the second straight day on Wednesday, with banks and miners leading the way as investors hoped Beijing's efforts to stabilise its ailing stock markets were starting to pay off.

[SYDNEY] Australian shares pared early losses to close down 0.2 perc ent on Monday, with gains in healthcare and utilities helping offset slides by banks and miners.

National airline carrier Qantas Airways rose as much as 2.6 per cent after comments by CEO Alan Joyce on the benefits from a trade pact. They ended the day up 1.7 per cent.

The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 10.2 points to 5,030.4 at the close of trade. On Friday, the benchmark rose 12.8 points or 0.25 per cent to 5,040.6.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index gained 0.5 per cent or 24.9 points to finish Monday's session at 5,572.7.