Home Commodities Commodity stocks lift Australian shares; RBA decision on tap

Commodity stocks lift Australian shares; RBA decision on tap


May 7 (Reuters) – Australian shares rose on Tuesday led by mining and energy stocks helped by firmer commodity prices, while investors eyed the central bank’s monetary policy decision, due later in the day.

The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.6% to 7,724.600 by 0040 GMT. The benchmark closed 0.7% higher on Monday.

In Sydney, market participants await the Reserve Bank of Australia’s monetary policy decision, hoping to get further cues on the central bank’s interest rate-cut trajectory.

Following an array of data which have doused all previous hopes of early rate cuts, the market now expects the central bank to cling onto its cash rate.

A Reuters’ poll showed that economists forecast only one rate cut this year.

Bellwether mining stocks gained 1.1% boosted by iron ore price rise.

Mining behemoth BHP Group rose 1%.

Rate-sensitive financials sub-index largely traded flat ahead of the RBA decision.

Two of the “Big Four” banks rose, while National Australia Bank fell 2.1% and ANZ Group lost 2.2% after the lender reporting a 7% fall in its half-yearly cash profit.

Energy stocks rose 0.6%, as global oil prices steadied, with Israel rejecting a ceasefire proposal.

Woodside Energy gained 1.3% while smaller rival Santos rose 0.2%.

Healthcare sector jumped 0.7% with Australia’s priciest stock CSL gaining 0.8%.

Utilities sector logged 2.2% gain, with AGL Energy jumping as much as 6.8% after the power producer hiked its annual earnings outlook.

Information technology firms rose 1.1% tracking gains of its U.S. peers while real estate stocks advanced 1.2%.

New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index traded flat at 11,840.7900.

The country’s monetary policy decision is scheduled for later this month. At its last meeting, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand kept its cash rate of 5.5% unchanged.

($1 = 1.5099 Australian dollars) (Reporting by Rajasik Mukherjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich)

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