The share market’s bullish start to the new quarter continued after upbeat economic data triggered strong gains in Europe and the US overnight.
The ASX 200 rallied 52 points or 0.9
Leading local tech stars Altium, Afterpay Touch and, Appen all rose at least 4.5
On a morning for milestones, Rio Tinto regained the $100 level for the first time since the financial crisis before fading to a mid-session loss of 0.7
Oil Search rose 2.5
The big banks all rose at least 1
Overnight, the S&P 500 in the US put on 1.16
A heavy schedule of domestic economic news started with an unexpected surge in building approvals. The ABS gauge showed a 19.1
The morning’s other economic release was more sobering. NAB’s measure of online spending recorded the largest contraction in its history during February as consumers cut spending on groceries and alcohol.
Gold futures eased $1.40 or 0.1 per cent to $US1,292.80 an ounce. The dollar was buying 71.04 US cents.
Looking ahead, a big day for domestic market-moving data continues with the 2.30pm EST release of the Reserve Bank’s revised rate statement and cash rate this afternoon, then the release of the Federal Budget at 7.30pm tonight. Wall Street’s most-anticipated release tonight is monthly durable goods orders. Tomorrow morning brings services indices from here and China, plus domestic trade and retail sales figures.