Jeff Gross/Getty Images

Australian stocks closed July 6.3% ahead, the best monthly rise for almost five years.

The scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,562.30 +5.74 +0.10%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,643.90 +7.16 +0.13%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7509 +0.0006 +0.08%

The local market ended the session, the week and the month in positive territory. The ASX 200 added 1.2% this week and is now 5% ahead for calendar 2016, mainly because of July trading, the best monthly rise since October 2011.

Today, the major banks were mixed with Westpac 0.9% higher at $31.09 but with the Commonwealth down 0.58% to $77.35.

The big miners dropped with BHP shedding 2.2% to $19.52 and Rio Tinto 2% to $49.56.

Sleep disorder group Resmed closed almost 7% higher at $9.20 after posting a full year profit $US352.4 profit.

The top stories:

1. A fizzer from Japan. The Bank of Japan eased monetary policy by increasing exchange traded fund purchases to an annual 6 trillion yen, up from 3.3 trillion yen.

2. Bega cheese comes out on top. But the damage to Murray Goulburn, the largest dairy processor in Australia, from losing a contract to supply Woolworths is about $108 million. Bega closed 6.9% higher at $6.20. Murray Goulburn fell 8.4% to close at $1.145.

3. The irony of banks complaining about Apple Pay. Chris Brycki, founder and CEO of Stockspot, comments on attempts by the banks to get Apple to open up so they move into cardless payments.

4. Anaemic. Whether due to the federal election, UK Brexit referendum or other factors, Australian private sector credit growth slowed sharply in June.

5. Kevin misses. Malcolm Turnbull has decided not to back former prime minister Kevin Rudd’s bid to become the United Nations secretary-general.

6. PODCAST: With Jo Masters on shoppers’ changing habits, the meat price war, the RBA and more.

7. The space age Dyson’s hairdryer. At a super-powerful $700, is it worth it?

8. Kayaking will never be the same again. Watch this encounter with a massive white pointer shark in Western Australia.

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