Local share market follows US gains

The share market is holding onto strong early gains in late trade, with most sectors in positive territory.

The All Ordinaries was 0.7 per cent higher at 4,621 around 3:00pm (AEDT), and the ASX 200 had also risen by 0.7 per cent to 4,607.

Shares in surfwear retailer Billabong remain on a trading halt amid speculation about a takeover offer.

However, the rest of the retail sector is posting strong growth - Woolworths and Wesfarmers (which owns Coles) were both up more than 1.5 per cent.

Department store David Jones was up 1 per cent and Myer had added around 0.5 per cent.

Fortescue Metals Group was up 2.4 per cent, as the Chinese iron ore spot price passed $US130 a tonne yesterday.

Rio Tinto was up 1.8 per cent, and BHP Billiton up 0.9 per cent.

Qantas was gaining strongly, up 2.9 per cent to $1.435.

NAB led gains among the major banks, with a 1.1 per cent gain to $24.74, while the Commonwealth Bank was 0.5 per cent higher after it increased its stake in Aussie Home Loans from a third to 80 per cent for an undisclosed sum.

The dollar was buying 105.45 US cents.

Market Data

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