ASX 200 Closes at 2-Week Highs

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ASX 200 Closes at 2-Week Highs
Credit: © Reuters.

By Oliver Gray - The S&P/ASX 200 closed 57.60 points or 0.79% higher at 7,330.10 during Thursday’s session, closing at 2-week highs as easing long term bond yields provided a boost to technology names, while miners gained and energy companies fell.

In coronavirus news, Victoria tallied 2297 cases today, the highest daily COVID-19 cases any Australian state or territory has recorded since the pandemic began. Meantime, New South Wales recorded 406 new cases as Premier Dominic Perrottet noted that the state is likely to reach its 80% double-dose vaccination target over the weekend, allowing restrictions to ease further on Monday.

Among stocks, technology names closed higher as Afterpay Touch Group Ltd (ASX: APT ) jumped 4.8%, Xero Ltd (ASX: XRO ) was 5.28% higher, Appen Ltd (ASX: APX ) up 6.15% and Wisetech Global Ltd (ASX: WTC ) gaining 7.17%. South32 Ltd (ASX: S32 ) shares also moved 4.93% higher following reports that the company would acquire a 45% stake in the Sierra Gorda copper mine in Chile. Mining companies also closed higher, with Rio Tinto Ltd (ASX: RIO ) up 1.15%, BHP Billiton Ltd (ASX: BHP ) adding 0.56% and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (ASX: FMG ) adding 2.29%.

Among data, Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed on Thursday morning that the official unemployment rate rose to 4.6% in September, little changed from a near 13-year low of 4.5% in August, with approximately 140,000 fewer people employed during the month amid lockdowns across the country.

On the bond markets, Australia 10-Year yields eased to 1.636% while United States 10-Year rates fell to 1.549%.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 added 23.31 points or 0.18% to 13048.49.

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