Mining stocks, energy shares lead the way in day of strong share market gains
A day of healthy gains on the share market has seen the Australian dollar recover ground, as investors assessed the latest moves by global central banks.
The market opened higher after the US Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged, and appeared unlikely to raise interest rates again in a hurry.
But the Bank of Japan surprised markets by making no change to interest rates or its stimulus program.
Australian stocks lost ground after the announcement but recovered through the afternoon.
The All Ordinaries index added 0.75 per cent to close at 5,289.
The ASX 200 index rose by 38 points to finish on 5,225.
Mining stocks led the way, shrugging off lower iron ore prices while Fortescue Metals jumped by 6.2 per cent to $3.25.
Shares in the gold miner Perseus Mining are in a trading halt as the company is expected to change its production forecasts.
Energy shares saw a boost from a rise in oil prices with oil and gas producer Santos adding 3.5 per cent to $4.70.
Pacific Brands takeover offer boosts shares
Pacific Brands — the owner of Bonds underwear and Sheridan sheets — was the best performer on the ASX 200.
It soared by nearly 23 per cent to $1.16 after it received a takeover offer from the US underwear and T-shirt maker Hanes.
Hanes has offered to buy Pacific Brands for $1.15 a share, valuing the deal at $1.1 billion.
Elsewhere, the big four banks were mostly higher. ANZ fared the best, up 0.6 per cent to $24.02, while Westpac was the only one to retreat, down 0.9 per cent to $30.67.
In currencies, the dollar was higher in afternoon trading after plunging amid Wednesday's unexpected inflation figures, which prompted speculation the Reserve Bank could cut interest rates next week.
Just after 5pm on Thursday, the dollar was buying 76.4 US cents. It was also fetching 67.3 euro cents, 82.7 Japanese yen and 52.4 British pence.
Oil prices are lower after overnight gains, with Brent crude buying $US46.84 a barrel.
Spot gold is higher at $US1,255 an ounce.
Source: ABC News