The Australian dollar has marched to a high not seen since November last year, reaching 95.07 overnight.
Tracey Warren of CMC Markets Stockbroking said in a statement the eight month high has been driven by hints the local economy is showing signs of improvement coupled with a lift in Chinese manufacturing.
“A surprise drop in US manufacturing data overnight further aided the local unit’s rise as the US dollar faltered as the prospect of a mid-2015 rate rise took a back seat,” she said.
Online retail sales growth rebounds
Online retail sales growth rebounded in May, after a small decline in April according to the NAB Online Retail Sales Index released this morning.
In the 12 months to May 2014, Australians spent $15.3 billion on online retail. This level is equivalent to 6.6% of spending at traditional bricks-and-mortar retailers as measured by the ABS.
The NAB Online Retail Sales Index grew by 0.2% in May, after a small decline in April. Compared to a year ago, the online index is 5.1% higher.
The Australian sharemarket rallied 1% on opening after Wall Street soared to new highs on the back of strong US car sales and Chinese manufacturing data.
At the 10.15am official market open, the S&P/ASX200 index rose 55.6 points, or 1.03%, to 5,431.5 points, while the All Ordinaries index gained 53.2 points, or 0.99%, to 5,419.7 points.