July 7 (Reuters) - Australian shares climbed on Tuesday ahead of the central bank meeting, as a survey showing a resurgent U.S. services industry and hopes of a rebound in China’s economy lifted investor sentiment.
The Reserve Bank of Australia is expected to keep the cash rate at 0.25% and make no changes to policy, but investors will watch for comments on the economic impact from a spike in coronavirus cases.
Boosting sentiment prior to the meeting were a survey showing unexpected growth in the U.S. services sector last month and signs that China’s economy was recovering.
Investors, however, remained concerned about the spike in COVID-19 cases in some states of the United States that has hampered efforts to restart the economy.
The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.9% to 6,071.3 in early trade, bouncing back from Monday’s losses.
Strong commodity prices lifted the mining index and gold stocks by more than 2% each.
Gold explorer St Barbara Ltd climbed nearly 8% and was the top percentage gainer on the benchmark, after reporting a jump in fourth-quarter production.
Lithium miner Orocobre Ltd and iron ore miner Fortescue Metals Group Ltd were among the other biggest gainers on the benchmark.
The tech sub-index climbed 1.7% to a record high and was on track for a sixth straight session of gains.
Buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) firm Sezzle Inc’s Australian shares jumped 22.4% to a record high after reporting strong quarterly merchant sales.
Afterpay, another BNPL heavyweight, said it would raise about A$800 million ($559 million) in a bid to capitalize on a surge in online shopping amid lockdowns. Its shares remained on a trading halt.
Financials hit their highest level in nearly a month. Commonwealth Bank of Australia climbed 1.4% after Morgan Stanley said it expected the lender to deliver solid second-half results.
New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index climbed 0.9% to its highest level in more than four months.
$1 = 1.4300 Australian dollars Reporting by Shruti Sonal in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu