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Market Update

Australian Indexes Extend Gains, RetireAustralia in $640 Million Deal

Author: Marcus Jacob
Last Update: 10:56 AM ET December 29 2014

5:30 PM Sydney Australian markets reacted positively to the rising world markets on Friday. Australian dollar edged lower following the persistent weakness in oil prices. Infratil Ltd and New Zealand pension fund agreed to acquire RetireAustralia for $640 million.

Australian stocks extended gains following international market advance. However crude oil traded lower in Asia and gold edged up.

Australian dollar closed at 81.38 U.S. cents and in stock-trading turnover advanced to 411 million shares worth $2.4 billion.

ASX 200 Index climbed 79.30 or 1.5% to 5,473.80 and broader All Ordinaries Index jumped 77.50 or 1.4% to 5,447.

In commodities trading, gold jumped $18 to US$1,196 an ounce and light crude oil fell 70 cents to US$55.14 a barrel. Brent Crude declined 47 cents to close at US$60.11 a barrel.

Australian Stock Movers

Aveo Group gained 2.9% to $2.12 after the property developer secured a new $275 million debt refinance facility maturing in August 2015. The new debt facility is expected to reduce cash interest expense by $10 million a year.

Aveo had already terminated $150 million interest rate swaps in last June.

Dexus Property Group jumped 2.6% to $7.31 after the industrial and retail property developer acquired Lakes Business Park in South Sydney for $153.5 million from the Mitchell family.

Infratil Ltd closed unchanged at $2.35 after the utility investor and New Zealand''s state-run pension fund agreed to acquire Australian privately-held retirement village operator RetireAustralia for worth about $640.2 million.

Kresta Holdings Ltd surged 10% to 22 cents after the window furnishing company signed an agreement to acquire Franklyn Blinds Awnings Security for $10 million in cash.

Sources: Data collected by 123jump.com and Ticker.com from company press releases, filings and corporate websites. Market data: BATS Exchange. Inc