Feb 28 Australian shares rose on Tuesday,
bolstered by buying in financial stocks as fund managers looked
to improve their portfolios' performance before the end of the
"Financials are doing the 10 point lifting", said Evan
Lucas, market strategist at IG Markets. "It is the last day of
the month, so you do slightly get window dressing trading going
The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 26.5 points or 0.5
percent to 5750.5 points by 0044 GMT, putting it on track to
gain more than 2 percent in February after a reasonable earnings
season. The benchmark fell 0.3 percent on Monday.
The financial index rose as much as 1 percent in
early trade, with Westpac Banking Corp taking the lead
among gainers on the index.
National Australia Bank Ltd rose 1.3 percent to an
18-month high, while wealth management company AMP Ltd
rose as much as 3.4 percent.
Commonwealth Bank of Australia rose as much as 1
The country's biggest mortgage lender said on Tuesday it had
allocated A$1.45 billion ($1.1 billion) in hybrid securities at
a margin of 390 basis points over the bank bill swap rate.
Also contributing to gains were energy stocks, as the energy
index rose posted its biggest intra-day percentage gain since
Engineering services provider WorleyParsons Ltd led
the gains with a record intra-day percentage gain, rising to its
highest since July 2015.
"It (Worley Parsons) is a big jump. Movement in the energy
space is the big one and it is the big standout in terms of what
you can see".
Oil and gas producer Santos Ltd and energy provider
Origin Energy Ltd rose 2.4 percent apiece.
On the other side, laundry services provider Spotless Group
Holdings Ltd touched a record low, posting its biggest
intra-day percentage fall since December 2015.
The company reported a net loss of A$358.1 million for the
half-year ended December 31 2016, compared to a profit of A$64.7
million from the previous year.
Gold miners Newcrest Mining Ltd and Evolution
Mining Ltd shed as much as 4.7 percent and 7.4 percent
respectively, as gold prices fell after tapping a 3-1/2-month
high on Monday.
New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.31
percent or 22.21 points to 7101.39.
Telecom and healthcare stocks were the biggest gainers, with
telecomunications provider Spark New Zealand Ltd rising
as much as 1.7 percent.
Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corporation Ltd touched
a week's high after rising 1.12 percent
For more individual stocks activity click on
(Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Additional reporting
by Shashwat Pradhan; Editing by Kim Coghill)