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Confidence flows back into market

THE sharemarket enjoyed its best week in more than a year as money flowed back into stocks on confidence European banks will be strengthened against a Greek default.

THE sharemarket enjoyed its best week in more than a year as money flowed back into stocks on confidence European banks will be strengthened against a Greek default.

The local bourse ended in the black for the third straight day on Friday, with the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index up 93 points, or 2.3 per cent, at 4162.9, and the broader All Ordinaries rising 92.9 points, or 2.25 per cent, to 4,225.

CMC Markets head of analysis David Land said the third day of strong buying inspired confidence but the market was still vulnerable to changes in Europe, amid highly volatile conditions.

"When you consider what the futures looked like in the morning, the gain [yesterday] has exceeded all expectation and sees caution being thrown to the wind," he said.

Energy stocks led the gains as oil prices rose again overnight. Woodside Petroleum rose 2.2 per cent, or 74?, to $35.08, while Santos finished up 3.6 per cent, or 42?, at $12.02.

Among the miners, BHP Billiton advanced 2.5 per cent to $37.20, while fellow miner Rio Tinto gained $3.12, or 4.9 per cent, to $66.40.

Financials, which led the US market higher overnight, were also strong, with all the major banks gaining ground. National Australia Bank closed the strongest, up 89?, or 3.9 per cent, to $23.76.

Investment bank Macquarie Group was among the best performers, rising $1.52, or 6.7 per cent, to $24.06.

Transfield Services rose 14?, or 6.9 per cent, to $2.16 after announcing a share buyback this week.

Qantas shares rose 5?, or 3.5 per cent, to $1.50 after resolving some of it industrial relations problems.

IT company CSG rose 7 per cent to $1.13 after announcing it had received a new approach following a $340 million offer from an unnamed bidder last week.

ALL ORDS

4225.0

AUSTRALIA

92.90 (2.2%)

HIGH 4242.4

LOW 4132.1

SOURCE: BLOOMBERG


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