ASX surges to two-week high as China offers trade war olive branch


Across the sectors, gains were led by energy which jumped 1.6 per cent, helped by a strong bounce in crude oil prices after steep falls earlier in the week.

Woodside Petroleum led the move, with an increase of 2.7 per cent to $34.36.

Financials also rallied 1.4 per cent. Investment managers Pinnacle Investments and Janus Henderson were standout performers, the former surging 11.2 per cent to $5.57 as the latter jumped 7.1 per cent to $41.16.

Healthcare also gained 1.3 per cent, closing at a fresh high. Heavyweight CSL did much of the heavy lifting, closing up 1.6 per cent at $320.62.

Materials also climbed 1.2 per cent on the back of firmer commodity prices. BHP gained 1.7 per cent to $39.54, while Lynas Corporation jumped 4.6 per cent to $2.27.

Building materials suppliers Adelaide Brighton, Boral and CSR also rallied following upgrades from investment bank UBS. CSR led the charge, lifting 4.4 per cent to $5.01.

“A combination of house price growth and a bounce in new loans are creating a positive macro backdrop for building materials firms to outperform,” said UBS analyst James Brennan-Chong.

Outside of the investment managers, rural conglomerate Elders was the other notable gainer for the session, jumping 6.2 per cent to $8.31, as rain fell across large parts of drought-ravaged eastern Australia.

At the other end of the spectrum, Service Stream slumped 9.1 per cent to $2.50 following a profit update, while Pilbara Minerals, one of the star performers on Wednesday, fell sharply to close down 5.8 per cent to $0.325.


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