Australian shares lifted by financials, reopened NZ closes at record high
* NZ has best day in 7 months, one day after glitches halted
* Australia's 'Big Four' banks see strong gains
* Gold stocks hurt as risk appetites return
(Updates to close)
By Nikhil Nainan
Aug 29 (Reuters) - Australian shares rose again on
Wednesday, supported by financial stocks, while New Zealand's
benchmark index had its biggest gain in seven months and ended
at a record high the day after system glitches halted trading.
The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.8 percent to 6,352.2 at
the close. The benchmark added 0.6 percent on Tuesday.
The financial sector surged 1.8 percent on
Wednesday, with the so-called 'Big Four' banks propelling
smaller peers, following optimism global trade tensions could
Westpac Banking Corp, Australia and New Zealand
Banking and Commonwealth Bank of Australia
climbed between 2.1 percent to 2.7 percent. National Australia
Bank advanced 1.8 percent.
"The financial sector has felt the most pressure over the
last four weeks or so, particularly when the market has been
weak. Now ironically, that puts them back in a position where
some might consider them good value," said Michael McCarthy,
chief strategist at CMC Markets and Stockbroking.
Gold prices recovered slightly after Tuesday's sharp fall,
but not enough to pull investors back into gold stocks. Signs of
recovery in the U.S. dollar adds to woes for the precious metal.
Among the sector's top losers were Resolute Mining,
down 4.2 percent, and St Barbara, which dropped 2.9
Boral Ltd jumped over 10 percent after the
building-products maker reported a higher annual profit and
forecast a 20 percent or more rise in core earnings from its
North American division in fiscal 2019.
New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index closed at a
record high of 9,362.67 after climbing 1.6 percent, the biggest
one-day advance since Jan. 31. Investors made up for a day
largely without trading on Thursday, due to a series of
Index heavyweights a2 Milk Company and Fletcher
Building were the biggest boosts, closing 4.4 percent
and 3.5 percent higher, respectively.
Synlait Milk, in which a2 Milk holds a nearly 18
percent stake, was the biggest gainer, up 5.2 percent.
(Reporting by Nikhil Kurian Nainan in Bengaluru; Editing by
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