Australia shares higher at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 up 1.12%

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Australia shares higher at close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 up 1.12%
Credit: © Reuters. – Australia equities were higher at the close on Thursday, as gains in the IT , Consumer Staples and Consumer Discretionary sectors propelled shares higher.

At the close in Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 added 1.12% to hit a new 5-year high.

The biggest gainers of the session on the S&P/ASX 200 were APN Outdoor Group Ltd (AX: APO ), which rose 12.39% or 0.725 points to trade at 6.575 at the close. Appen Ltd (AX: APX ) added 6.65% or 0.865 points to end at 13.865 and Bellamys Australia Ltd (AX: BAL ) was up 6.21% or 1.050 points to 17.960 in late trade.

Biggest losers included Ramsay Health Care Ltd (AX: RHC ), which lost 8.16% or 5.070 points to trade at 57.100 in late trade. TPG Telecom Ltd (AX: TPM ) declined 2.76% or 0.150 points to end at 5.290 and Vocus Group Ltd (AX: VOC ) shed 2.34% or 0.060 points to 2.500.

Advancing stocks outnumbered falling ones by 734 to 521 and 414 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 11.746.

In commodities trading, Gold Futures for August delivery was down 0.67% or 8.60 to $1265.90 a troy ounce. Meanwhile, Crude oil for delivery in August fell 0.29% or 0.19 to hit $65.52 a barrel, while the August Brent oil contract fell 0.52% or 0.39 to trade at $74.35 a barrel.

AUD/USD was down 0.19% to 0.7354, while AUD/JPY rose 0.11% to 81.40.

The US Dollar Index Futures was up 0.23% at 95.00.

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