The Australian share market has closed higher for a second session in a row, boosted by a positive lead from US markets and a steady oil price.

“We’ve certainly been led by what’s going on in the US,” IG market strategist Evan Lucas said.

“We’ve had a really good bounce, and having a look at Dow Futures, they also look fairly solid tonight.”

Mr Lucas said trading volumes were still low, but investors were looking to pick up stocks after a “carnage” week.

Mr Lucas said a snap-back in the oil price also was encouraging.

US markets provided a strong lead as oil prices steadied and investors became more confident of monetary stimulus in Europe.

US oil prices, which have fallen more than 50 per cent since June, rose slightly for a second day in a row.

Investors have been worried that lower oil prices could be a sign of weakening economic growth.

On the local bourse, oil and gas producer Woodside Petroleum rose $ 1.09, or 3.03 per cent, to $ 37.05, Santos surged 39 cents, or 5.34 per cent, to $ 7.69, and Oil Search advanced 26 cents, or 3.67 per cent, to $ 7.35.

Global miner BHP Billiton gained 78 cents to $ 29.16, Rio Tinto lifted 75 cents to $ 59.40, and Fortescue Metals gained 11 cents to $ 2.78.

Among the major banks, Commonwealth Bank was up 65 cents at $ 86.04, NAB strengthened 51 cents to $ 34.23, Westpac improved 59 cents to $ 33.40, and ANZ picked up 48 cents at $ 32.39.


  • On Friday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 84.1 points, or 1.56 per cent, at 5,465.6 points.

  • The broader All Ordinaries index was up 80.7 points, or 1.51 per cent, at 5,440.1 points.

  • The March share price index futures contract was 85 points higher at 5,422 points, with 24,116 contracts traded.

  • The price of gold in Sydney at 1700 AEDT was $ US1,212.40 per fine ounce, up $ US3.00 from $ US1,209.40 on Thursday.

  • National turnover was 1.02 billion securities worth $ 3.63 billion.