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AUSTRALIAN STOCKS STRONGER: Here's What You need To Know

David Swallow smiles after catching a wave surfing during a Gold Coast Suns AFL pre-season training session at Casuarina Beach on the Gold Coast. Matt Roberts/Getty Images

The Australian market hit its seventh straight positive trading day, helped by a firm Wall Street and local investors betting the RBA will cut interest rates next week

Here’s the scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,588.30 +18.82 (+0.34%)
  • All Ordinaries: 5,551.60 +19.37 (+0.35%)
  • AUD/USD: 0.7792 +0.0032 (+0.42%)

Wall street was stronger in overnight trade with the S&P 500 up 0.95%.

Locally, energy stocks staged a rally and miners booked strong gains. Woodside Petroleum was up 1.6% to $34.28 and Fortescue firmer by 5.8% to $2.36.

The ASX has now gained 5% in two weeks over seven positive trading days.

The top stories on Friday:

1. Better than a pay rise. The sharp drop in the cost of petrol at the bowser will make Australian households almost $7 billion better off in 2015 if prices stay where they are, according to analysis by Deutsche Bank.

2. Freelancer, the world’s largest freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace, today announced record receipts from customers of $7.4 million in the December quarter, up 7.6% on the previous three months. Its shares closed up more than 13% to $0.68.

3. Australian retail investors are displaying a disconnect in their strong belief in local equities and their lack of diversification in their portfolios, according to the results of Goldman Sachs Asset Management’s latest Retail Investor Survey.

4. The Aussie Dollar dropped three cents in 36 hours, the lowest level traded against the US dollar since July 2009.

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