ASX opens higher despite dip for big banks

The Australian share market has opened higher as the heavyweight mining and financial sectors pull in opposite directions.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 8.8 points, or 0.13 per cent, to 6,674.2 points at 1030 AEST on Tuesday, while the broader All Ordinaries was up 8.4 points, or 0.12 per cent, to 6,753.9.

The materials sector led gains, advancing 0.77 per cent in the first half hour of trading.

Mining giant BHP was up 0.58 per cent to $41.44, Rio Tinto was up 1.34 per cent to $103.09, and Fortescue Metals was up 1.47 per cent to $8.95.

But the big four banks were all lower, with ANZ down 0.14 per cent to $28.64, Commonwealth down 0.17 per cent to $82.56, NAB down 0.41 per cent to $26.83 and Westpac down 0.18 per cent to $28.28.

Elsewhere, the telecommunications sector performed strongly, adding 0.59 per cent.

Telstra was up 0.65 per cent to $3.865 and Hutchison Telecommunications was up 4.35 per cent to 12 cents.

Collins Food was up 0.78 per cent to $7.73 after the fast food franchisor said strong sales at its KFC outlets helped the company boost its full-year profit.

On Wall Street overnight, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.03 per cent, the S&P 500 was down 0.17 per cent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite was down 0.32 per cent.

The Aussie dollar is buying 69.71 US cents, from 69.55 US cents on Monday.


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