The Australian market has piled on $45 billion in two days, as investors snap up bank shares following last week’s dip.
At the close today the S & P/ASX 200 was 1.1 per cent higher at 5833.9 points, which puts the two-day gain at 2.75 per cent.
The broader All Ordinaries index was up 60.4 points, or 1.04 per cent, at 5862.2 points.
Banks continued to find buyers after the big four all saw their best session of the year yesterday, with Commonwealth Bank and Westpac shining particularly bright.
CBA gained 1.4 per cent today to $82.30, while Westpac grew 1.7 per cent to $31.32. NAB gained 0.6 per cent to $30.31, ANZ added 0.8 per cent to $28.62 and Macquarie lifted 1.6 per cent to $90.30.
It comes after the ASX fell 1.9pc last week — the worst week of the year.
Yesterday, however, was the year’s best session.
Bargain hunting continues to be on the minds of investors following an extended weak patch, according to Atlantic Pacific Securities client adviser Gary Huxtable.
“It looks like investors are back with a vengeance, buying bank shares that have been oversold the past few sessions,” Mr Huxtable said, but added the market has recently been range-bound, so the positive moves over the last few days are not unexpected.
With a rate hike from the Federal Reserve fully priced in by the market, few expect any fireworks at this month’s central bank meeting, ending early tomorrow (AEST), but investors will be keen to hear the latest commentary from Fed chair Janet Yellen.
“It’s difficult to draw a conclusion that tomorrow’s Fed meeting is the main catalyst for the recent rebound in global financial stocks, our banks are getting a lot of support now,” he said.
“It’s simply been a case of buying the dip, both domestically and in the US,” Mr Huxtable said.
Elsewhere on the local market, CSL jumped another 3.2 per cent to $142.04 as investors continue to applaud the group’s purchase of a majority stake in a Chinese biotech Ruide for $465 million.
Wesfarmers pushed 0.4 per cent higher to $40.91, Woolworths lifted 0.8 per cent to $26.29, Telstra fell 0.4 per cent to $4.36 and miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto remained flat.
News that Ten Network had entered voluntary administration was well received by other media stocks, with Nine Entertainment ranking as the best performer on the ASX 200 with a 6.2 per cent rise taking it to $1.36, while Seven West Media gained 5.3 per cent to 69 cents.