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Energy, financial stocks boost Aust shares

Investor demand for energy and banking stocks has helped the Australian share market extend its morning gains.

After three days of declines, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 18.1 points, or 0.32 per cent, to 5,742.3 points at 1200 AEDT on Tuesday.

The energy sector is the biggest gainer, up 1.95 per cent, thanks to support for Woodside Petroleum, Origin Energy and Oil Search.

All four of the nation's biggest banks are in positive territory, supporting the financials index.

Miners are mixed, with BHP Billiton up 22 cents to $25.21 but Rio Tinto down 28 cents to $62.21.

Spotless shares have dropped more than 10 per cent to 84.7 cents after the cleaning and catering company swung to a $358 million loss in the six months to December 31.

Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at a record high for a 12th straight session - up 0.08 per cent at 20,837.44 - after US President Donald Trump said he would make a "big" infrastructure statement.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar is lower at 76.71 US cents, from 76.92 US cents on Monday, following a strengthening in the greenback.

ON THE ASX:

* At 1200 AEDT, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 18.1 points, or 0.32 per cent to 5,742.3 points.

* The broader All Ordinaries index was up 15.2 points, or 0.26 per cent to 5,789 points.

* The March SPI200 futures contract was up 20 points, or 0.35 per cent, at 5,713 points, with 16,153 contracts traded.

* National turnover was 1.86 billion securities traded, worth $2.33 billion

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1200 AEDT:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 76.71 US cents, from 76.92 on Monday

* 86.41 Japanese yen, from 86.28 yen

* 72.48 euro cents, from 72.79 cents

* 61.68 British pence, from 61.86 pence

* 106.62 New Zealand cents, from 106.84 NZ cents

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 1200 AEDT:

* CGS 5.25 per cent March 2019, 1.803pct, from 1.796pct

* CGS 4.25pct April 2026, 2.670pct, from 2.662pct

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* March 2017 10-year bond futures contract at 97.260 (implying a yield of 2.740pct), unchanged from Monday

* March 2017 3-year bond futures contract at 98.020 (1.980pct), unchanged

(*Currency closes taken at 1700 AEDT previous local session, bond market closes taken at 1630 AEDT previous local session)