International markets extended their rally overnight after the US earnings season kicked off on a positive note.
US markets banked their fourth straight session of gains after aluminium giant, Alcoa, announced quarterly profit and sales that exceeded analyst estimates. The Dow Jones added 75 points (+0.5%) to settle at 15300, the Nasdaq rose 0.7% to 3504 and the S&P500 climbed 0.5% to 1652.
The rebound on Wall Street has seen the S&P500 mostly recover the almost six percent plunge from its record high in late May.
European markets enjoyed even stronger gains, with the UK FTSE advancing 1% to 6513, the German DAX soaring 1.1% to 8058 and the French CAC jumping 0.5% to 3844.
Most commodities strengthened, with oil holding above $103 a barrel as the ongoing political turmoil in Egypt continues to fuel concerns of supply disruptions in the Middle East.
Gold (+0.9%) and silver (+0.5%) also rose as a bigger-than-expected rise in Chinese consumer prices last month boosted the metals’ appeal as an inflation hedge.
In currency markets, the euro slid 0.7% to US$1.2781 amid speculation the European Central Bank will ease monetary policy further, even as the Fed looks to scale back its own easing policies.
Elsewhere, the Aussie appreciated 0.5% to US$0.9176, but could come under renewed selling pressure on the back of an IMF report suggesting China is in for a prolonged economic slowdown.
In local economic news, the Westpac Consumer Sentiment Survey is due for release at 10:30am, AEST.