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Market Update

Australian Markets Jump 5% in July, Qantas Blames Price Increase On Fuel Cost

Author: Marcus Jacob
Last Update: 9:43 AM ET July 31 2013

5:00 PM Sydney Australian indexes closed higher and finished the month with a surge of 5.2%. Precious metals and resource sector stocks were in focus in the month after gold price trended lower and more mining companies delay new projects and cut spending. Potash price collapse will put a new hurdle to BHP plans.

After a volatile day and month of trading market indexes closed higher and clocked 5.2% gain in widely followed indexes.

Mining and resources companies were in focus as earnings season gathers steam and the sector grapples with high operating costs and falling international prices of commodities.

The ASX 200 index rose 4.80 to close at 5,052 and the broader All Ordinaries gained 9.40 to 5,035.70. For the month, ASX 200 surged 5.2%.

Australian dollar declined to 90.30 U.S. cents and in stock trading turnover fell to 731 million shares worth $4.1 billion.

Stocks in Review

Rio Tinto fell 20 cents to $57.51 and BHP slid 31 cents to $34.64. Woodside Petroleum Limited jumped 21 cents to $37.59.

David Jones Limited added 3 cents to $2.70 and Breville Group gained 19 cents to $7.54.

Woolworths rose 10 cents to $33.32, Mirvac Group slid 2 cents to $1.64 and Lend Lease fell 5 cents to $8.77.

Westpac gained 3 cents to $30.89 and Commonwealth rose 0.2% to $74.21. National Australia Bank added 4 cents to $31.23. ANZ increased 17 cents to $29.76.

AGL Energy Limited slid 0.9% to $14.55 after the gas and electricity provider approved two solar power projects worth a total of $450 million for 53 megawatt plant in Broken Hill.

Clough Limited surged 28.2% to $1.43 after the engineering and construction contractor received a takeover bid from its major shareholder Murray & Roberts Holdings Limited to acquire remaining stake at $1.46 cash per share.

Qantas Airways Limited fell 0.8% to $1.26 after the airline plans to increase fuel surcharges by $75 in international flights to compensate the cost of jet fuel.

Virgin Australia Holdings Limited gained 1.1% to 45.5 cents after the Air New Zealand raised its stake to 26% in the company. The consumer watchdog suspended its review of the move pending more information from Virgin.

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