Australia shares have muted finish, bounce 1.7 pct in April

Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:25am EDT

(Updates to close)

SYDNEY, April 30 (Reuters) - Australian shares finished a tick higher in choppy trade on Wednesday, restrained by banks and index heavyweight Woolworths, though gains on Wall Street overnight and a recovery in miners helped keep the market afloat.

The S&P/ASX 200 index added 2.5 points at the close of trade, ending up 1.7 percent for the month of April. The benchmark lost 0.9 percent on Tuesday, snapping seven consecutive sessions of gains.

Consumer retail staple Woolworths Ltd plumbed 1.9 percent.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index climbed 1.6 percent to finish at 5,232.7 to all-time highs, underpinned by an improving economy. The NZX 50 added 1.8 percent for the month. (Reporting by Thuy Ong; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)