Australian Market Notably Higher

The Australian stock market is trading notably higher on Wednesday, recouping the losses in the previous two sessions, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 moving above the 7,500 level to fresh nine-month highs, following the broadly positive cues from Wall Street overnight, with gains in mining and financial stocks partially offset by weakness in gold mining and energy stocks.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is gaining 39.30 points or 0.53 percent to 7,516.00, after touching a high of 7,537.70 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is up 39.90 points or 0.52 percent to 7,726.00. Australian stocks ended slightly lower on Tuesday.

Among major miners, BHP Group and Fortescue Metals are gaining almost 1 percent each, while Rio Tinto is edging up 0.5 percent and Mineral Resources is adding more than 1 percent. OZ Minerals is flat.

Oil stocks are mostly lower. Woodside Energy and Santos are down almost 1 percent each, while Beach energy is losing almost 2 percent and Origin Energy is edging down 0.4 percent.

In the tech space, Afterpay owner Block and Xero are gaining almost 2 percent each, while Zip is adding more than 1 percent. WiseTech Global is down almost 1 percent and Appen is losing almost 2 percent.

Among the big four banks, National Australia Bank, Westpac and Commonwealth Bank are edging up 0.3 to 0.5 percent each, while ANZ Banking is gaining more than 1 percent.

Among gold miners, Newcrest Mining and Resolute Mining are losing more than 1 percent each, while Gold Road Resources is declining almost 3 percent, Evolution Mining is down more than 1 percent and Northern Star Resources is edging down 0.2 percent.

In other news, shares in Flight Centre are surging almost 9 percent on news that it is raising A$180 million in a bid to fund an acquisition of British travel business Scott Dunn for A$211 million.

In economic news, the manufacturing sector in Australia slipped into stagnation in January, the latest survey from Judo Bank revealed on Wednesday with a manufacturing PMI score of 50.0. That's down from 59.2 in December and lands right on the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.

In the currency market, the Aussie dollar is trading at $0.705 on Wednesday.

On Wall Street, stocks climbed higher on Tuesday thanks to sustained buying across the board after a slightly cautious start. Investors picked up stocks right through the day's session, digesting a slew of stronger than expected earnings updates and the latest batch of economic data.

The major averages all ended with strong gains. The Dow ended with a gain of 368.95 points or 1.09 percent at 34,086.04, the S&P 500 surged 58.83 points or 1.46 percent to 4,076.60 and the Nasdaq climbed 190.74 points or 1.67 percent to 11,584.55.

The major European markets also turned in a mixed performance on the day. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 drifted down 0.17 percent, while Germany's DAX and France's CAC 40 both edged up slightly.

Crude oil futures moved higher on Tuesday on expectations the Federal Reserve will hike interest rates at a slower pace, so the greenback might strengthen less than expected. West Texas International Crude oil futures for March ended higher by $0.97 or 1.3 percent at $78.87 a barrel.

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