Aust stocks set to open higher

Local market tipped to begin stronger on upbeat Wall Street leads.

The Australian stockmarket looks set to open higher after the S&P 500 hit a new record peak with investors were generally optimistic about growth in the United States economy.

At 0645 AEDT, the March share price index futures contract was up 21 points at 5,417.

In local economic news, the Reserve Bank of Australia releases the index of commodity prices for February and the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) releases business indicators for the December quarter.

The ANZ job advertisements series, the TD Securities-Melbourne Institute inflation gauge and the Australian Industry Group performance of manufacturing (PMI) index, all for February, are due out as is the Housing Industry Association new home sales for January.

No major equities news is expected.

In Australia, the market on Friday fell slightly on the last day of the month, but enjoyed growth in February after a solid corporate earnings season.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was down 6.6 points, or 0.12%, at 5,404.8 points.

The broader All Ordinaries index was down 5.6 points, or 0.1%, at 5,415.4 points.

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