ASX 200 Closes Higher as Evergrande Fears Ease

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ASX 200 Closes Higher as Evergrande Fears Ease
Credit: © Reuters.

By Oliver Gray - The S&P/ASX 200 closed higher on Wednesday, adding 23.10 points or 0.32% to 7296.90 and extending gains of 0.25% in the previous session as Chinese property giant Evergrande confirmed it would pay some of its bond interest which is due on Thursday.

In coronavirus news, New South Wales added 1035 cases, after health authorities mandated a week-long lockdown in 3 local government areas on Tuesday after a coronavirus-infected authorised worker was active in the community. Victoria added 628 cases as fears that the virus infections could explode amid mass construction protests in Melbourne, while the ACT added 17 fresh cases.

Among stocks, energy companies closed higher with Oil Search Ltd (ASX: OSH ) up 2.39% and Woodside Petroleum Ltd (ASX: WPL ) adding 2.68%. Miners also rebounded as Iron ore prices stabilized, with BHP Billiton Ltd (ASX: BHP ) up 2.4%, Rio Tinto Ltd (ASX: RIO ) gaining 2.7% and Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (ASX: FMG ) adding 4.2%. Meantime, Zip Co Ltd (ASX: Z1P ) added 4.33% after announcing that it has made its entry to the Indian market.

In policy news, Reserve Bank of Australia’s assistant governor Michele Bullock noted today that policymakers are closely watching Australia’s booming housing prices but are opting to refrain from any macro-prudential interventions at this stage, adding that banks were in good shape to manage risk and evidence suggests that lending standards are not declining in Australia even though families are taking on more debt in the face of low interest rates and surging property prices.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 added 38.86 points or 0.29% to 13215.8.

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