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Australia shares gain for 5th session, driven by miners; NZ up
February 13, 2017 / 5:56 AM / 7 months ago

Australia shares gain for 5th session, driven by miners; NZ up

(Updates to close)

Feb 13 (Reuters) - Australian shares extended gains to a fifth straight session on Monday as copper and iron ore prices drove miners higher.

The S&P/ASX 200 index ended 0.7 percent, or 40.09 points, higher at 5,760.7.

Miners BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Fortescue Metals gained between 2.2 percent and 6.3 percent.

Fortescue Metals was the biggest gainer on the benchmark and recorded its highest close since in nearly six years.

Expectations of strong demand for building materials drove steel prices higher, steering iron ore futures in China to three year highs on Monday.

London copper extended gains to hit its highest in 20 months on supply worries after shipments were shut off from the world’s two biggest copper mines.

On the other hand, Bendigo and Adelaide Bank shed 5 percent as it posted bleak half yearly results earlier in the day. It was the biggest loser in the financial index, restricting its gain to 0.33 percent.

The biggest loser on the benchmark index was Domino’s Pizza Enterprises which lost 4.8 percent. Dominos, which is set to report its half year results on Wednesday, says it has found no evidence of a link between franchisee profitability and breaches of employment obligations, while adding that it is investigating the allegation.

New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index closed 0.44 percent, or 31.07 points, higher at 7,135.5.

Fletcher Building and A2 Milk were the biggest gainers on the index, each gaining over 2.3 percent.

Contact Energy followed, adding 1.8 percent as it posted a 12.3 percent rise in underlying half-year profit.

Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore

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