Aust stocks lift at noon

Local market pushes higher despite Wall St falls as shutdown depressed markets.

The Australian stock market has lifted at noon despite falls on Wall Street as the United States government shutdown and fears of a debt default depressed offshore markets.

At 1210 AEST, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index gained 0.66% to 5,249.9 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index added 0.61% to 5,246.5 points.

In economic news, the Australian Industry Group/Commonwealth Bank Australian Performance of Services Index (PSI) for month just ended showed a marked improvement in the sector.

IG analyst Evan Lucas said volumes this week have been lower than average as it is school holidays and some investors are sitting on the sidelines.

"However, the defensive trade on the ASX does look strong as yield investors add support to the banks, the supermarket chains and Telstra," Mr Lucas said.