Australia shares rise on boost from healthcare, mining; NZ down
* Dalian iron ore hits record high, miners surge
* Energy stocks jump as oil prices at highest since Nov.
* Gold miners among top gainers amid firm prices
(Updates to close)
April 8 (Reuters) - Australian shares were given a boost on
Monday by gains in mining and healthcare firms, with upbeat U.S.
jobs data helping ease some of the anxiety over a broad slowdown
globally and in the world's biggest economy.
Wall Street stocks rose on Friday after U.S. nonfarm
payrolls data beat expectations in a much-needed boost to
fragile investor confidence.
The S&P/ASX 200 index closed up 0.65 percent or 40.1
points at 6,221.4, recouping some of 0.8 percent losses on
"Many of the underlying commodities are in the uptrend at
the moment and that would see continued support for the
miners... Prices remain elevated and there could be further
gains in the sector," said Michael McCarthy, chief market
strategist at CMC Markets.
Miners jumped 1.7 percent as Dalian iron ore prices
extended an impressive rally, hitting a record high. Mining
behemoths BHP Group rose 1.4 percent, while Rio Tinto
advanced 1.5 percent.
Fortescue Metals Group rose 2.8 percent, posting
its ninth winning session out of ten.
Increased demand from China for steelmaking raw materials as
industrial activity returns to full swing at the end of winter
supported prices, amid declining shipments from Brazil and
Resolute Mining was the top gainer on index, up 7.7
percent, after its March quarter gold production rose 33 percent
from the prior quarter.
Other gold miners also rallied after gold prices
rose to a one-week peak, with the country's biggest gold miner
Newcrest Mining gaining 1.4 percent.
On the downside, rare-earths miner Lynas Corporation
slipped amid signs of tightening regulations, with the
firm facing the prospect of losing the operating license for its
processing plant in Malaysia.
Also boosting the index were healthcare stocks,
which rose 1.5 percent, with benchmark heavyweight CSL Ltd
putting on 1.8 percent.
Energy stocks rose in tandem with oil prices, with
Woodside Petroleum up 1.3 percent and Oil Search
tacking on 1.1 percent.
Financial stocks underperformed, with the "Big Four"
banks edging lower, as the sector took a breather after a strong
six-session rally that ended on Thursday.
New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index fell 0.51
percent or 49.97 points to finish at 9,807.08.
Transportation and energy services provider Infratil
slipped 1.6 percent after it cut its earnings guidance
for the 2019 year.
(Reporting by Rashmi Ashok in Bengaluru; Additional reporting
by Aby Jose Koilparambil
Editing by Shri Navaratnam)
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