RTTNews - The Australian market ended on a 9-month high on Tuesday led by mining stocks on higher commodity prices, and banks after major European banks reported better-than expected results. Positive closing on Wall Street with the Nasdaq and S&P500 surpassing the key technical levels of 2,000 and 1,000 respectively also lifted market sentiment.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 Index ended at 4,315, representing a gain of 1.21% or 51.70 points, and the All-Ordinaries Index ended with a gain of 43.40 points, or 1.02% at 4,314.

In the U.S., better-than-expected manufacturing survey from the Institute of Supply Management and surprise increase in construction spending coupled with higher commodity prices and slump in dollar provided further ammunition to the equities driving the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 past the key technical levels of 2,000 and 1,000, respectively, while the Dow registered a 3-figure gain.

The Dow closed up by 114.95 points or 1.3% at 9,287, the Nasdaq climbed by 30.11 points or 1.5% to 2,009, and the S&P 500 rose by 15.15 points or 1.5% to 1,003.

On the economic front, the Reserve Bank of Australia left its key interest rate unchanged as expected for the fourth month. The official cash rate now stands at 3%, the lowest level in 49 years. In a separate report, the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed that retail sales, on a seasonally-adjusted basis, dropped 1.4% month-on-month in June, after rising 1% in the preceding two months and 2% in March. Total retail sales amounted to A$19.4 billion, down from A$19.7 billion in May.

Light sweet crude oil price for September delivery ended at $70.81 a barrel in electronic trading, down $0.77 from its previous close $71.58 a barrel in New York on Monday.

Mining stocks advanced following sharp rise in commodity prices in the international market. BHP Billiton gained 2.02%, Rio Tinto surged up 4.30%, Iluka Resources advanced 3.02% and Fortescue Metals edged up 0.23%.

Financials advanced on expectations of global recovery and stabilization in the global financial sector after the major European banks reported satisfactory results and were cautiously optimistic in their forecast. ANZ Bank gained 3.00%, Commonwealth Bank of Australia advanced 1.97%, National Australia Bank rose 3.97% and Westpac Banking added 0.45%.

Mixed trading was witnessed among the oil stocks despite rise in crude oil prices. While Woodside Petroleum slipped 0.82% and Santos edged down 0.20%, Oil Search added 0.89% and Origin Energy advanced 0.82%.

Gold stocks also ended mixed. Sino Gold surged up 4.42% and Newcrest Mining gained 3.97%. However, Lihir Gold edged down 0.36%.

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