Energy, tech stocks lead gains across the board as share market closes higher

The share market has closed higher for the first time in more than a week, with healthy gains across the board.

The best results were for energy and technology shares, while bank stocks recovered from yesterday’s big sell-off.

The All Ordinaries Index added 70 points to close at 5,291, while the ASX 200 rose by 1.4 per cent to finish on 5,239.

The major lenders all advanced as the Reserve Bank left interest rates on hold at its November board meeting but opened the door to a rate cut.

The RBA board kept the cash rate at the historic low of 2 per cent, saying prospects for an improvement in the economy had strengthened.

But it said weak inflation may afford scope for further easing.

Westpac fared the best of the big banks, rising 2.3 per cent to close at $31.30, while the Commonwealth Bank added 1.8 per cent to $76.46.

A weekly measure of consumer confidence by ANZ and Roy Morgan found shoppers were more confident about Australia’s economic outlook.

The index rose by 1.6 per cent to just over 115.

ANZ said confidence in the Turnbull Government had offset concerns about recent increases in the variable mortgage rates of the big four banks.

In company news, Graincorp shares shed 4.6 per cent to close at $8.48 after the company warned full-year net profit after tax was likely to fall by 36 per cent to $32 million based on unaudited results.

The biggest grain handler in the eastern states has blamed challenging conditions in global grain markets for the decline.

Graincorp will release its final audited results next week.

In currencies, the dollar jumped after the Reserve Bank’s rates announcement and was buying 72 US cents about 5:00pm (AEDT).

It was also fetching 65.3 euro cents, 86.8 Japanese yen and 46.6 British pence.

In commodities, spot gold was lower at $US1,138 an ounce.

West Texas crude slipped to $US46.07 a barrel and Tapis crude was also slightly lower at $US50.22 a barrel.

Source: ABC News