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Australia: Shares end slightly firmer, China flash PMI eyed

Australian shares bucked a poor performance by Wall Street to edge 0.6 per cent higher on Thursday, aided by a hunt for dividend yield and more merger action.

[SYDNEY] Australian shares found a steadier footing on Tuesday, thanks to a rebound in oil and gas producers, but investors showed no conviction ahead of a closely watched survey of China's manufacturing sector.

The S&P/ASX 200 index ended 0.7 per cent, or 37.4 points, higher at 5,103.6, steadying from Monday's 2 per cent slide.

Traders said China's flash PMI survey on Wednesday will set the tone for the market with any signs of weakness likely to hit risk appetite hard.

Sectors that were heavily sold off on Monday found some buyers. Among the best performers were oil and gas producers, with Woodside Petroleum closing 2.8 per cent higher.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index finished up 0.2 per cent, or 13.3 points, at 5,696.8.


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