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Australia: Shares end higher as rising commodity prices boost miners, energy stocks

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Australian shares closed higher on Monday, driven by gains in mining and energy stocks as the heavyweight sectors benefited from climbing prices of their respective underlying commodities.

[SYDNEY] Australian shares closed higher on Monday, driven by gains in mining and energy stocks as the heavyweight sectors benefited from climbing prices of their respective underlying commodities.

The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 1.03 per cent to 5,460.5 points on Monday. It is down 19.14 per cent so far this year.

The subindex for mining stocks ended nearly 5 per cent higher as iron ore prices in top steel producer China hit a record peak, helped by port inventory of the steelmaking raw material dropping to a more than three-year low.

"It's pretty much it between the commodity-driven sectors today, as slow re-openings of markets are somewhat helping shore up prices," said Henry Jennings, senior analyst at Marcustoday Financial.

Copper prices also climbed as reopening of some economies boosted hopes of a revival in demand for metals.

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Energy stocks saw their best day in almost two weeks as oil prices were supported by output cuts and signs of gradual demand recovery amid easing coronavirus curbs.

Brent crude futures rose 3.51 per cent while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude gained 4.38 per cent.

Oil & gas explorer Santos Ltd surged over 7 per cent in its best day in May, while peer Oil Search Ltd hit an almost two-week high.

New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index ended 0.3 per cent higher, helped by gains among utility and consumer stocks.

REUTERS

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