Get all your news in one place
100’s of premium titles. One news app. Zero ads. Just $10 per month.

ASX rallies as financials, miners advance, while Imugene soars as gold stocks tumble

The benchmark index extends its gains from Friday. (ABC News: John Gunn)

Australian shares have raised sharply in a broad-based rally, with heavyweight financials leading the gains as investors shrugged off recession fears amid looming rate hikes, while strong iron ore prices boosted miners.

The ASX 200 closed up 127 points, or 1.9 per cent, to 6,706, extending gains to a third session.

Meanwhile, the broader All Ordinaries index was up 131 points, or 1.9 per cent, at 6,894.

Investors also took cues from Friday's strong gains in global stocks, as a recent slide in commodity prices eased worries about soaring inflation and the rate-hike outlook.

The Australian dollar was down, at 69.24 US cents, by 04:19pm AEST.

Financials advanced as much as 2.6 per cent, to their highest since mid-June, and were among the top gainers on the benchmark index, with the "big four" banks climbing between 2.3 per cent and 4 per cent.

Miners jumped 1.6 per cent as iron ore prices rose on expectation of a recovery in demand after Chinese President Xi Jinping pledged to take more effective measures to achieve the country's economic and social development goals.

Sector leaders BHP Group, Rio Tinto and Fortescue added between 2.4 per cent and 3.5 per cent.

Technology stocks tracked Wall Street higher, rising 2.4 per cent. Block climbed 5.5 per cent, while software firm Xero added 1.2 per cent.

Limiting the benchmark index's gains, gold stocks nosedived 7.4 per cent to their lowest since March 2020, as heavyweight Evolution Mining tumbled almost 22 per cent after cutting its production outlook.

The company now expects 2022 gold production to be around 640,000 ounces, well below its previous guidance of 700-760 thousand ounces.

Shares of Suncorp Group rose 3.6 per cent after the country's second-largest insurer said it was conducting a strategic review of its banking operations.

Shares of Link Administration advanced 4.1 per cent, even as Canadian cloud-based software company Dye & Durham lowered its takeover proposal, while digital property settlements platform PEXA group climbed 3.8 per cent.

Immuno-oncology company Imugene soared 45.5 per cent, to $0.24, marketing company Metcash gained 4.1 per cent, to $4.30, while gold miner Northern Star tumbled 12.1 per cent, to $7.02, and Zip dropped 3.7 per cent, to $0.52. 

'Time for a bounce'

Stocks on global markets rallied on Friday and registered strong gains for the week as a recent slide in commodity prices eased worries about inflation and the rate hike outlook.

The S&P 500 climbed 3.1 per cent in its biggest daily percentage gain since May 2020, and the MSCI global index rose 4.8 per cent for the week, snapping three straight weeks of declines.

US Treasury yields edged up from two-week lows.

Investors have been worried that aggressive interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve and other major central banks to combat inflation could cause a recession, which would reduce demand for commodities and other items.

"The [stock] market came into this week oversold, so it was time for a bounce," said Quincy Krosby, chief equity strategist at LPL Financial in Charlotte, North Carolina.

"We've seen oil prices come down along with other commodity prices," she said, adding that the market's move was reflecting "expectations of at least a marked slowdown if not an out-and-out recession."

Also, the University of Michigan consumer sentiment survey's reading on five-year inflation expectations was positive for stocks, Dr Krosby said. It eased to 3.1 per cent from the preliminary 3.3 per cent estimate in mid-June.

The benchmark S&P 500 last week confirmed a bear market.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 823.32 points, or 2.68 per cent, to 31,500.68, the S&P 500 gained 116.01 points, or 3.06 per cent, to 3,911.74, and the Nasdaq Composite added 375.43 points, or 3.34 per cent, to 11,607.62.

For the week, the S&P 500 rose 6.4 per cent, the Dow added 5.4 per cent and the Nasdaq gained 7.5 per cent.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 2.62 per cent and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe gained 2.63 per cent.

Oil prices were higher on Friday but notched their second weekly decline.

By 4:25pm AEST, Brent crude oil was slightly down, trading at $US113.06 a barrel.

ABC/Reuters