Aust stocks set to open stronger

Friday's strong gains of about 1% on Wall Street expected to boost local market.

The Australian sharemarket looks set to open higher after US stocks surged as strong Google earnings and a large pharmaceutical deal offset worries about worsening international crises in Ukraine and Gaza.

At 6.45am (AEST) on Monday, the September share price index futures contract was up 22 points at 5,507.

Google shot up 3.7% as second-quarter earnings rose 6% to $US3.42 billion ($3.70bn) on a 22% increase in revenues behind more "paid clicks".

Drug maker AbbVie sealed a tax-cutting $US54bn takeover deal with Dublin-based Shire Pharmaceuticals as it plans to switch its tax base to Britain to avoid higher US taxes. AbbVie rose 2.6%.

In local economic news on Monday, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia releases its business sales indicator.

In equities news, Aquila Resources is expected to post its quarterly activity report.

The local market on Friday edged higher despite local investors and markets around the world being unnerved by the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index gained 9.3 points, or 0.17%, to 5,531.7 points.

The broader All Ordinaries index also lifted 9.3 points, or also 0.17%, to 5,519.2 points.