(Updates to close)
April 27 Australian shares ended higher on
Thursday, underpinned by financials, as investors stayed on the
sidelines against the backdrop of a weaker Wall Street.
The S&P/ASX 200 index ended 9.464 points or 0.16
percent higher, at 5,921.50.
In the United States, the S&P 500 ended 0.05 percent
lower, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.1
percent, after U.S. President Donald Trump's one-page tax plan
failed to excite investors.
The Australian stock market seemed to be consolidating after
a bull run over the last few sessions, analysts said, adding
that traders are now looking for market-moving catalysts.
The financial index hit a 23-month high, led by the
'Big Four' banks, which are slated to report earnings next week.
The biggest drag on the index came from energy stocks - oil
majors slipped on lower prices, while stocks such as Santos
and Origin Energy, which have some LNG assets,
fell after the Aussie government proposed to restrict exports
of liquefied natural gas during times when domestic shortage
(due to high exports) pushes up local LNG prices.
Miners BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and
Fortescue Metals slipped on lower commodity prices.
New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index ended 0.266
percent or 19.480 points higher to finish the session at
7,354.610, led by materials.
Fletcher Building Limited was the top performer on
the index, which climbed to a fresh six-month high on Thursday.
(Reporting by Aparajita Saxena in Bengaluru; Editing by