Finance Finance News Australian shares bounce at open

Australian shares bounce at open

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The Australian share market has jumped at the open, recovering around half of yesterday’s $23 billion loss.

Local shares slipped around 1.5 per cent yesterday, with members of the broad All Ordinaries index losing about $23 billion in market value, following falls on US markets on Monday.

However, US markets bounced back solidly last night and Australian stocks are following.

In early trade, the All Ordinaries index was up 42 points to 5,261 by 10:32am (AEDT), and the ASX 200 was also up 0.8 per cent to 5,254.

As with the falls yesterday, today’s gains are broadly based with most sectors rising.

ANZ was leading bank gains with a rise of 1 per cent, while the other majors had risen by 0.6-0.8 per cent.

Retailers have pulled back some of yesterday’s steep losses, although most are still in the red for the week.

JB Hi-Fi was up 1.1 per cent at $21.07, but that is after slumping 5.7 per cent yesterday – the company is still well off last Friday’s close at $22.28.

Qantas shares were up 1.4 per cent to $1.11, despite the company downplaying Financial Review reports that it will partially float its profitable frequent flyer program.

In response Qantas said it will update the market on its structural review at its half-year results in February and, in the meantime, “the review is looking at a range of options and we’re not going to add or subtract weight to any of those options by commenting on speculation.”

“The simple fact is that no decisions have been made,” Qantas concluded in a short emailed statement.

The mining sector has also bounced back – BHP Billiton was up a modest 0.3 per cent, with Rio Tinto rising 1.75 per cent.

Pure play iron ore miner Fortescue has jumped 4.5 per cent to $5.38.

However, the biggest rise amongst the miners has been for Oz Minerals, which was up nearly 17 per cent at $3.58 after its latest quarterly production report was released to the market.

The company struggled in 2013 with rising costs and falling production volumes, but costs declined dramatically in the December quarter, with the firm forecasting further improvement this year, as well as a substantial rise in output.

While shares have strengthened, the Australian dollar has slipped around a cent from highs above 90.8 US cents yesterday to 89.62 US cents around 11:00am (AEDT).