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Australia: Shares end higher for week boosted by commodities


[SYDNEY] Australian shares ended 0.6 per cent higher on Friday, boosted by a rebound in commodities, with miners and energy-related stocks propping up the index.

Major miners BHP Billiton gained nearly 6 per cent while Rio Tinto jumped 4.7 per cent.

The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 30.3 points to close at 5,263.6, but came off the day's high of 5,305 after weak data from China kept alive worries about slowing momentum in its economy.

It marked the fourth straight day of rises for the index, which gained 1.2 per cent on Thursday. After a tumultuous start to the week when global markets were rocked by turmoil in Chinese equities, the index posted its first percentage gain in three weeks.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index rose 0.63 per cent or 35.5 points to finish the session at 5,670.48.