The Australian stock market has opened higher following gains on Wall Street driven by good US manufacturing data and car sales figures.
CMC Markets chief market analyst said the Australian market might be further supported by the news that China's non-manufacturing PMI business indicator had improved following a rise in its official manufacturing PMI on Thursday.
The US figures were especially welcomed, he said.
“The US manufacturing data was particularly encouraging as it indicates the private sector of the US economy may not have been too knocked about the government shutdown (last month),” he said.
A raft of local and global economic data could influence markets this week, starting with the Reserve Bank's board meeting on Tuesday and the expectation it will leave the interest rate at the record low of 2.5 per cent.
Australia's third-largest bank by market capitalisation, Westpac, has continued last week's trend of banks breaking earnings records with a $7.1 billion full year profit.
However, traders were not impressed with its rate of growth and its shares were flat at $34.58.
The other major banks were all posting gains, with National Australia Bank 8.5 cents higher at $35.715, Commonwealth Bank up 40 cents to $76.20 and ANZ 12 cents better at $33.84.
Among the miners, diversified giant BHP Billiton had dropped 6.0 cents to $37.47.
However, Rio Tinto had gained 8.5 cents to $63.625 and Fortescue was 10 cents, or 1.9 per cent, stronger at $5.26 following a large, $3.40 (2.5 per cent), rise to $US135.30 a tonne spot iron ore price on Friday.
- At 1045 AEDT on Monday, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 13.9 points, or 0.26 per cent, at 5,425.
- The broader All Ordinaries index was up 12.7 points, or 0.23 per cent, at 5,419.2.
- The December share price index futures contract was 21 points higher at 5,411, with 6,807 contracts traded.
- National turnover was 347.6 million securities worth $509.2 million.