You are here
Australia: Shares end higher on broad-based gains; NZ up over 1%
[BENGALURU] Broad-based gains pushed Australian shares higher on Tuesday, with tech stocks leading the pack, although worries persisted as factories in China struggled to reopen amid the rapidly-spreading coronavirus.
The S&P/ASX 200 index closed 0.6 per cent higher at 7,055.3.
Overnight, US stocks closed higher, boosted by tech giants such as Amazon.com and Microsoft Corp. Their Australian peers tracked these gains, with Xero and WiseTech Global rising 1.4 per cent and 3 per cent each.
"With the strong lead from Wall Street, markets globally are tracking higher despite the fact that coronavirus is still a concern in the background," Steven Daghlian, market analyst at CommSec said.
"But by no means are we shooting the lights out just yet."
The death toll from the coronavirus epidemic in mainland China soared past 1,000 on Tuesday, while the prolonged disruption to factories and businesses played havoc with the world's second-largest economy.
The financial subindex added to the benchmark's gains, with the "Big Four" banks rising between 0.7 per cent and 0.9 per cent.
Healthcare stocks advanced, with heavyweight CSL and Ramsay Health Care ending 0.6 per cent and 1.1 per cent higher.
Elsewhere, investment management firm Challenger was the top gainer on the benchmark after forecasting FY20 net profit to be around the top end of its outlook range.
Gold stocks snapped two straight sessions of gains to end slightly lower as the spotlight returned to riskier assets.
Across the Tasman Sea, New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index closed more than 1 per cent higher, helped by financial and utility stocks.
New Zealand listed shares of Westpac Banking advanced 1.5 per cent, while Meridian Energy gained 2.8 per cent.