New Zealand Markets open in 6 hrs 10 mins

Commodities help drive share market higher

The Australian share market was higher at midday, led by the major banks, miners and oil and gas producers.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 0.77 per cent to 5,695.1 points at 1200 AEDT on Friday.

Oil prices rebounded overnight on the hopes the world's leading oil producers would extend their production limit, pushing local energy companies higher.

Woodside Petroleum was up 1.14 per cent, Oil Search gained 1.57 per cent and Santos was up 1.75 per cent.

ANZ led the big four banks' gains with a 1.31 per cent rise, while Westpac, National Australia Bank and Commonwealth Bank were between one per cent and 1.17 per cent higher.

Among the major miners, Rio Tinto jumped $1.39, or 2.04 per cent, to $69.38, BHP Billiton advanced 45.5 cents, or 1.74 per cent, to $26.54, and Fortesecue Metals was up 5.0 cents, or 0.97 per cent to $5.20.

Many retailers including The Reject Shop and Myer took a dive on Friday following the previous day's gloomy retail spending data, which showed the sharpest monthly decline in more than four years.

The Reject Shop was down 0.7 per cent, Myer down 1.6 per cent, and JB Hi-Fi down 0.53 per cent, while Smiggle owner Premier Investments was flat.

The Australian dollar was also lower against its US counterpart, trading at 77.91 US cents at 1200 AEDT, down from 78.27 US cents on Thursday.

ON THE ASX:

* At 1200 AEDT, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 43.3 points, or 0.77 per cent, at 5,695.1 points.

* The broader All Ordinaries index was up 40.4 points, or 0.71 per cent, at 5,760.7 points.

* The SPI200 futures contract was up 39 points, or 0.69 per cent, at 5,673 points.

* National turnover was 1.29 billion securities traded worth $133.9 billion.

CURRENCY SNAPSHOT AT 1200 AEDT:

One Australian dollar buys:

* 77.91 US cents, from 78.27 on Thursday

* 87.90 Japanese yen, from 88.26 yen

* 66.53 euro cents, from 66.60 euro cents

* 59.47 British pence, from 59.14 pence

* 109.63 NZ cents, from 109.41 cents

GOLD:

The spot price of gold in Sydney at 1200 AEST was $US1,268.91 per fine ounce, from $US1,274.24 per fine ounce on Thursday.

BOND SNAPSHOT AT 1200 AEDT:

* CGS 4.50 per cent April 2020, 2.0074pct, from 1.9792pct on Thursday.

* CGS 4.75pct April 2027, 2.7624pct, from 2.7319pct

Sydney Futures Exchange prices:

* December 2017 10-year bond futures contract at 97.16 (implying a yield of 2.84pct), from 97.19 (2.81pct) on Thursday

* December 2017 3-year bond futures contract at 97.85 (2.15pct), from 97.88 (2.12pct).

(*Bond market closes taken at 1630 AEDT previous local session; currency closes taken from 1700 AEDT previous local session)