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Australian stocks open higher, S&P 200 advances 24.8pts

Australian stocks open higher, S&P 200 advances 24.8pts

SYDNEY: Australian stocks have opened higher as the potential for a Reserve Bank of Australia rate cut next week supports the market, while oil and metals prices rallied.

At the 10.15am (AEDT) official market open, the benchmark S & P/ASX200 index rose 24.8 points, or 0.42 per cent, to 5,885.6, while the broader All Ordinaries index increased 24.2 points, or 0.41 per cent, to 5,857.1.

The RBA board meets next Tuesday to consider whether it will cut the official cash rate for a second time this year. The central bank lowered the rate to a new record low of 2.25 per cent in February but surprised the market by leaving it unchanged in March.

Overnight, the global benchmark oil price jumped after US weekly production declined for the first time in two months. Gold gained and base metals mostly rallied.

But iron ore collapsed below the $US50 a tonne level in the last trading session, declining for a sixth day on the outlook for a supply flood as production rises.