International markets extended their gains overnight amid positive updates on the global economy.
Wall Street resumed trading following the Memorial Day holiday, and the S&P500 claimed a new record high after data revealed US durable goods orders surged more-than-expected last month.
The American residential sector was also showing signs of renewed momentum. Separate data showed national house prices jumped in March, as buying activity was stimulated by falling interest rates.
In Europe, stocks climbed after ECB chief, Mario Draghi, again indicated he was in favour of more stimulus. The weekend’s positive EU election outcome helped fuel the gains across the Atlantic.
Gold was the big story in commodity markets, sinking more than two percent.
The yellow metal slumped as the rise in equities dulled its safe haven appeal, and as the recent Ukrainian election eases tensions between Russia and the strife-torn nation.
Oil was pressured by the positive developments in Ukraine, however the upbeat US data limited crude’s losses.
In contrast, nickel jumped amid reports of a riot at global miner, Vale’s, operations in New Caledonia, which stoked concerns about dwindling supply of the metal.
Among the major currencies, the Aussie dollar strengthened versus the greenback, but concerns remain about the local unit given tumbling iron ore prices and little prospects for a near-to-medium term RBA rate hike.