AUSTRALIAN STOCKS RALLY: What you need to know

Competitors race from Rottnest Island to Leighton Beach during the Red Bull Lighthouse to Leighton kiteboard race. Paul Kane/Getty Images

Australian stocks closed higher.

Today’s scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,428.70 +28.26 +0.52%
  • All Ordinaries: 5,486.60 +28.57 +0.52%
  • AUD/USD: 0.7460 -0.0012 -0.16%

The local market regained some of the 0.8% lost on Monday with a positive lead from Wall Street, where the S&P500 closed 0.6% higher, and a Reserve Bank keeping interest rates at record lows.

The miners led the rally with BHP up 1.1% to $25.48 and Rio Tinto 0.9% to $59.14.

Most major banks added weight with the ANZ 0.78% higher at $28.38. But the NAB closed down 0.2% to $28.70.

Healthcare stocks jumped after broker research indicted undervalued share prices and a brighter outlook for the sector. Japara Healthcare was up 11.9% to $2.21, Regis Healthcare 13% to $4.56 and Estia Health 11.4% to $$2.82.

The top stories:

1. A line ball. There’s now a very good chance the Australian economy contracted for the first time in 5 years.

2. BHP wins bid to develop a massive deep water oil field in Mexico. The world’s biggest miner will be become the operator of, and the 60% owner in, the massive Trion oil field.

3. An undersea high speed data cable between Australia and Singapore. Vocus has contracted Alcatel Submarine Networks for the 4,600 kms project.

4. Interest rates on hold. The Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) eleventh and final monetary policy meeting of 2016 was likely an uneventful one.

5. Selling off assets. Origin Energy will put its oil and gas assets into an IPO in 2017 to reduce debt and concentrate on its energy markets business.

6. Employers are banking $1 billion from a loophole in superannuation rules. Making the effort to pay a bit extra each month to superannuation may not be the best strategy, depending on where you work.

7. Sydney Angels launches $20 million sidecar. The aggregate organisation for angel investors launched its second co-investment fund named Sidecar Fund 2.

8. Taking a knife to the SurfStitch board of directors. The troubled online retailer SurfStitch has axed four from its board of directors.

9. The wealth effects from low interest rates and high asset prices are fading. Spending will stay low over the next 12 months with clothing the one highlight in a struggling retail sector, says Deloitte Access Economics.

10. What to get for Christmas? Here’s what these 23 Australian executives want.

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