Energy shares were the standout performers after a jump in oil prices and helped the ASX to a record high.
Energy Shares Lead Australian Stock Market To Record High
CANBERRA, Australia — A big jump in oil prices and energy shares have helped the Australian market reach a record high level early in trade.
Oil prices rose nearly two percent to their highest level in more than two years as investors expect more demand in the second half of the year.
The world’s biggest oil traders said they see oil prices staying above AU$91 ($70) a barrel. They said that demand was expected to return to pre-pandemic levels in the second half of 2022.
The gains helped the market reach a record high of 7404.9.
However, the indices were only slightly higher as gains in most categories were offset by materials shares declining by 0.68 percent.
Utility shares were the only other category to gain more than one percent. Information technology shares fared worst and lost 1.09 percent.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was higher by 23.6 points, or 0.31 percent, to 7403.1 on June 16.
The All Ordinaries was up by 19.9 points, or 0.26 percent, to 7652.9.
Meanwhile, the Aussie dollar traded for less than 77 US cents.
ANZ Bank researchers said lower commodity prices were responsible.
Wall Street’s main indices closed lower as data showing stronger inflation and weaker US retail sales in May spooked investors awaiting the results of the Federal Reserve’s latest policy meeting.
The central bank will give a statement on policy and conditions by June 17.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.27 percent, the S&P 500 lost 0.20 percent, and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.71 percent.
On the ASX, the Commonwealth Bank extended its all-time high price to AU$104.43 ($80.48).
Shares were up 0.83 percent to AU$104.31 ($80.39).
NAB was the best of the big four banks and higher by 0.86 percent to AU$26.90 ($20.73).
Insurer IAG said it had received 4,300 claims following the heavy rain and flash flooding that continues to plague large parts of Victoria.
The company said full-year natural perils claim costs were likely to be higher than earlier guidance.
Shares were up 1.66 percent to AU$5.19 ($4).
The big miners were mostly lower.
BHP shed 0.77 pe cent to AU$48.84 ($37.64) Fortescue climbed 0.51 percent to AU$23.45 ($18.07) Rio Tinto lost 0.33 percent to AU$126.06 ($97.15).
Shares in the Shaver Shop Group have plummeted after investors were disappointed by a full-year earnings forecast.
Shares fell as much as 10 percent in early trading despite the company projecting earnings that would be higher than last financial year. It was lower by 7.79 percent to AU$1.00 ($0.77).
The Australian dollar was buying 76.91 US cents, lower from 77.13 US cents at the end of the day on June 15.
(Edited by Gaurab Dasgupta and Saptak Datta.)