Australia markets closed

ASX finishes higher, TPG flying after Vodafone merge approved

Australian shares ascended in early trade on Wednesday. (Image: Getty)

Australian shares finished Wednesday higher, recovering from a dip in the middle of the day.

The ASX200 index ended the trading day up 0.19 per cent higher to reach 5,965.70 points.

The All Ordinaries did slightly better with a 0.20 per cent climb to finish Wednesday on 6,081.60.

This means the local market has now finished in the green for a fourth consecutive day.

The health sector led the way on Wednesday, with firms like CSL (up 1.1 per cent) and Sonic (4.7 per cent) gaining value. Telco retailer TPG was 0.45 per cent up after Wednesday morning’s approval from its shareholders to merge with Vodafone.

What happened at lunchtime?

Australian stocks at lunchtime Wednesday have lost the gains made in the morning, as the big banks drag the entire market down.

The benchmark ASX200 index had dipped 0.11 per cent by 12:10pm AEST to sink to 5,947.90 points.

The broader All Ordinaries was also down 0.11 per cent at the same time to reach 6,062.90.

Tech shares have gained but were cancelled out by the major four banks, which were struggling in morning trade. At midday AEST, airline Qantas had also lost 2.7 per cent.

Meanwhile telco TPG’s shares were up after its shareholders approved its proposed merger with Vodafone.

What happened this morning?

The Australian share market rose in early trade Wednesday, buoyed by an overnight rise on Wall Street. 

The ASX200 index headed 0.45 per cent higher in the first 18 minutes of trade to hit 5,981.00 points, while the All Ordinaries was up 0.44 per cent in the same period to reach 6,095.90.

The lift continues a positive session on Tuesday that saw the ASX200 end the day 0.17 per cent higher and the All Ords finish 0.19 per cent up.

The local market will be watching telecommunications company TPG's extraordinary general meeting on Wednesday, as shareholders get a chance to vote for a proposed merger with Vodafone.

What happened overnight?

Wall St rose overnight after optimistic numbers for US manufacturing and services and new home sales were revealed.

New data showed the contraction in the manufacturing and services sectors has slowed as coronavirus restrictions have eased. In separate numbers, new home sales increased 16.6 per cent, which was far beyond expectations.

Janney Montgomery Scott chief investment strategist Mark Luschini told AAP that the data is supporting a V-shaped recovery out of the pandemic.

"It's reinforcing views that equities can continue to advance even though there's a fair amount of economic damage that's going to loiter for some time to come, such as elevated unemployment readings and the slow recovery in travel, leisure and entertainment industries."

The rise in US stocks sent the SPI200 futures 0.15 per cent higher at 8am AEST Wednesday, forecasting the Australian market would open higher.

with AAP

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