Aust stocks close higher

Local market short of six-year high as investors lack conviction in data vacuum.

The Australian sharemarket has closed higher in thin trade after falling short of a six-year high during intraday trade as investors lack conviction in the absence of local market-moving data.

At the 4.15pm (AEST) official market close, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index added 15.5 points, or 0.28%, to 5,527.2 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index rose 15.9 points, or 0.29%, to 5,506.7 points.

CMC Markets chief market strategist Michael McCarthy the rise today was a "very unconvincing performance".

"As much as we like to see a rising sharemarket, as it's good news for clients, thin volumes have continued today," Mr McCarthy said.

"There's not a lot of conviction. That's understandable given we're in a data vacuum."

A private survey showing housing affordability is at the most favourable levels in 12 years due to low interest rates had little effect on equities today, he said.

Official data also showed a lift in construction work done in the March quarter, but investors are waiting for tomorrow's capital expenditure data.

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