AUSTRALIAN STOCKS SURGE: Here's what you need to know

Photo by Don Arnold / Getty Images.

It’s been another big day on the Australian Stock Exchange with the market closing up more than 1.2%.

First, the scoreboard:

  • S&P ASX 200: 5,777.30 +69.93 (+1.23%)
  • All Ordinaries: 5,733.70 +67.49 (+1.19%)
  • AUD/USD: 0.7831 +0.0039 (+0.50%)

And the top stories for Wednesday:

1. Atlas Iron stocks exploded today. Shares closed up more than 20% on the back of a higher iron ore price.

2. The ABS revealed it has been hugely under-counting Australia’s first home buyers. It blamed “under reporting by some lenders” for the massive error.

3. With speculation around the Liberal leadership continuing today business leaders have told warring ministers to grow up. This uncertainty isn’t good for the economy.

4. NAB’s online retail sales index showed online sales picked up in December — but growth is slowing. The activity was modest with online retail sales up just 0.1% in December (for an annual growth rate of 8.9%) compared to a 0.3% fall in November.

5. Echo Entertainment missed on expectations, but profit at the Star in the Sydney roared.

6. The Australian dollar, has regained all of its fall against the US dollar that followed yesterday’s RBA rates cut.

Here’s the chart of the ASX 200 today.

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