Aust stocks close higher

Local market lifts as investors take heart from Yellen's dovish comments.

The Australian stock market recovered some ground after yesterday's falls as likely incoming United States Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen said the country was not ready for a reduction in stimulus yet.

At the 1615 AEDT official market close, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index increased 0.68% to 5,355.4 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index rose 0.65% to 5,352 points.

IG market strategist Stan Shamu said markets in Asia came to life after Dr Yellen said the central bank still has plenty of work to do on the economy, with unemployment still too high and inflation below target.

"The question now is whether she can survive the wave of criticism that the Fed’s bond-buying program is likely to face from politicians," Mr Shamu said.

"She will really have to justify maintaining the program at the current pace, as the Fed’s balance sheet blows out to $US4 trillion."