Australia shares higher at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 up 0.40%

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Australia shares higher at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 up 0.40%
Credit: © Reuters. – Australia equities were higher at the close on Wednesday, as gains in the Healthcare , IT and Consumer Staples sectors propelled shares higher.

At the close in Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.40% to hit a new 5-year high.

The biggest gainers of the session on the S&P/ASX 200 were Aveo Group (AX: AOG ), which rose 7.92% or 0.175 points to trade at 2.385 at the close. Afterpay Touch Group Ltd (AX: APT ) added 7.28% or 1.100 points to end at 16.200 and Domino'S Pizza Enterprises Ltd (AX: DMP ) was up 6.00% or 2.940 points to 51.940 in late trade.

Biggest losers included Pact Group Holdings Ltd (AX: PGH ), which lost 19.10% or 1.020 points to trade at 4.320 in late trade. Insurance Australia Group Ltd (AX: IAG ) declined 6.07% or 0.500 points to end at 7.740 and Sandfire Resources NL (AX: SFR ) shed 4.66% or 0.360 points to 7.360.

Advancing stocks outnumbered falling ones by 633 to 569 and 379 ended unchanged on the Sydney Stock Exchange.

The S&P/ASX 200 VIX , which measures the implied volatility of S&P/ASX 200 options, was down 1.60% to 10.974.

In commodities trading, Gold Futures for December delivery was down 0.51% or 6.10 to $1194.60 a troy ounce. Meanwhile, Crude oil for delivery in September fell 0.40% or 0.27 to hit $66.77 a barrel, while the October Brent oil contract fell 0.21% or 0.15 to trade at $72.31 a barrel.

AUD/USD was down 0.33% to 0.7215, while AUD/JPY fell 0.24% to 80.28.

The US Dollar Index Futures was up 0.13% at 96.68.

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