ASX has muted reaction to trade talks

The Australian share market has closed higher but failed to make strong gains after the US and China agreed to resume trade talks over the weekend.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 29.3 points, or 0.44 per cent, to 6,648.1 points at 1615 AEST on Monday, while the broader All Ordinaries was up 32.3 points, or 0.48 cent, to 6,731.4.

The gains were "nowhere near as much as I'd expect, given what happened with Trump and Xi," said X-Chainge director Nick Twidale, referring to Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping agreeing at the G20 summit in Japan to restart trade talks.

"It's been a bit of an anti-climax off the meeting," Mr Twidale said.

"I've been very surprised at how muted the reaction's been."

Tech shares were the biggest gainer, closing up 2.4 per cent, with Computershare up 3.6 per cent to $16.79, Link Admin Holdings up 5.2 per cent to $5.26 and Citadel Group up 9.4 per cent to $5.03.

Afterpay Touch and its competitors were the outliers, all lower following Visa's announcement late last week it was entering the buy-now, pay-later space

Afterpay was down 2.7 per cent to $24.40, while Zip Co was down 6.3 per cent, Splitit down 6.4 per cent and Flexigroup down 2.5 per cent.

Property shares and energy were the only other sectors to gain more than a percentage point, with property trusts up 1.2 per cent and energy up one per cent amid indications the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies would extend an agreement on supply cuts for another six to nine months.

Santos was up 1.6 per cent to $7.19, Woodside Petroleum gained 0.6 per cent to $36.56 and Oil Search gained 1.3 per cent to $7.15, while in property Goodman Group gained 1.3 per cent to $15.22 and Scentre Group was up one per cent to $3.88.

Consumer stocks were the only sectors in negative territory, with consumer discretionary stocks dipping 0.4 per cent and consumer staples down 0.3 per cent.

Woolworths was down 0.6 per cent, Coles down 0.9 per cent and Aristocrat Leisure down 2.9 per cent.

Mining shares were up half a per cent after the price of iron ore hit a five-year high, with BHP up 1.3 per cent to $41.68, Rio Tinto gaining one per cent to $104.75 and Fortescue Metals up 1.5 per cent to $9.15.

Gold miners were lower after the price of the precious metal fell under $US1,400 after rising above it for the first time since 2013 last week.

Newcrest Mining was down 2.2 per cent to $31.26, Northern Star dipped four per cent to $11.18 and Evolution Mining was down 3.4 per cent to $4.21.

In the financial sector, ANZ and NAB were both up 0.3 per cent, to $28.28 and $26.80, respectively.

Westpac gained one cent to $28.37 while Commonwealth Bank dipped 0.6 per cent to $82.32.

The Aussie dollar is buying 69.95 US cents, from 70.14 US cents on Friday.

Looking forward, the Reserve Bank will announce its decision on interest rates on 1430 AEST on Tuesday, with some traders expecting another round of cuts.

ON THE ASX:

* The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 29.3 points, or 0.44 per cent, to 6,648.1 points at 1630 AEST on Monday.

* The All Ordinaries was up 32.2 points, or 0.48 per cent, to 6,731.4.

* At 1630 AEST, the SPI200 futures index was up 28 points, or 0.43 per cent, to 6,587.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1630 AEST:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 69.94 US cents, from 70.14 US cents on Friday

* 75.86 Japanese yen, from 75.53 yen

* 61.72 euro cents, from 61.66 cents

* 55.15 British pence, from 55.35 pence

* 104.44 NZ cents, from 104.62 cents

Austrlaian Associated PressBack to Breaking News

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