Australian shares extend gains as financials, miners advance

06/26/2022 | 09:40pm

June 27 (Reuters) - Australian shares jumped on Monday, with heavyweight financials leading the gains as investors shrugged off recession fears amid looming rate hikes, while strong iron ore prices boosted miners.

The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 1.5% to 6,676.5 by 0106 GMT, extending gains to a third session. Investors also took cues from Friday's strong gains in global stocks, as a recent slide in commodity prices eased worries about soaring inflation and the rate hike outlook.

Financials advanced as much as 2% to their highest since June 14 and were among the top gainers on the benchmark index, with the "big four" banks climbing between 2% and 3%.

Miners jumped 1.9% as iron ore prices rose on expectation of a recovery in demand after Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to take more effective measures to achieve the country's economic and social development goals.

Sector leaders BHP Group, Rio Tinto and Fortescue added between 1% and 3.5%.

Technology stocks tracked Wall Street higher, rising 1.1%. ASX-listed shares of Block climbed 3.2%, while software firm Xero added 1.1%.

Limiting the benchmark index's gains, gold stocks fell 6.9% to their lowest since March 2020, as heavyweight Evolution Mining tumbled 20.4% after cutting its production outlook.

The company now expects 2022 gold production to be around 640,000 ounces, well below its previous guidance of 700-760 thousand ounces.

Shares of Suncorp Group rose 3.3% after the country's second-largest insurer said it was conducting a strategic review of its banking operations.

Shares of Link Administration advanced 1.9% even as Canadian cloud-based software company Dye & Durham Ltd lowered its takeover proposal, while PEXA group climbed 4.9%.

New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 1.4% to 10,960.3. (Reporting by Roushni Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

© Reuters 2022
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