* ASX 200 rise to one-month highs in third session of gains
* Investors chase banks for high dividend yields
* Benchmark index is set to tack on xx percent for the week
(Adds analysis, quotes, stocks on the move)
By Thuy Ong and Naomi Tajitsu
SYDNEY/WELLINGTON, July 4 Australian shares rose
to one-month highs on Friday, driven by gains in most major
sector as investors cheered brisk jobs growth in the United
States and another record night on Wall Street.
Wall Street's holiday-shortened session ended with multiple
records on Thursday, with the Dow topping 17,000 for the first
time after the June jobs report came in much stronger than
Investors continued to scoop up top-tier banking stocks,
attracted by their high dividend yields of between 4.7 percent
to 5.8 percent each. National Australia Bank climbed
1.1 percent, Westpac Banking Corp added 0.7 percent,
and Commonwealth Bank of Australia tacked on 0.5
The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 33.2 points, or 0.7
percent, to 5,527.0 by 0227 GMT, its third day of consecutive
The benchmark climbed 1.2 percent on Thursday and is set to
book gains of 1.5 percent for the week, its third consecutive
week in the black as investors have swept back into the market
at the start of the new financial year.
"In terms of the longer term, we need to see either a big
structural change in the domestic economy, or see global
developing economies recover markedly before seeing the ASX
replicate the returns of our developed offshore peers," said Tim
Radford, global investment manager at Rivkin Securities in a
The resources sector underpinned the market as LME copper
surged to a session high of $7,187.50 a tonne, while
benchmark 62 percent grade iron ore for immediate delivery to
China .IO62-CNI=SI rose to $96.50 a tonne.
BHP Billiton Ltd climbed 1.1 percent to 1-month
highs of A$37.63, Rio Tinto Ltd added 0.3 percent to
A$62.62, its highest since mid-May, and Iluka Resources Ltd
jumped 1.2 percent to 1-month highs of A$8.71.
Among defensives, top telecommunications provider Telstra
Corporation Ltd jumped 1 percent.
Lynas Corp soared 5.6 percent after saying it
expects to reach its initial output rate target by December at
the latest, which would shore up its shaky cash position.
New Zealand's benchmark NZX-50 index was largely
flat at 5,167.87 in early trade.
Losses in gold explorer OceanaGold, which fell 2.0
percent on the back of a slide in global gold prices,
were offset by a 1.8 percent rise in New Zealand Refining
NZ Refining was boosted after the company said record-high
consumption of natural gas in the last two months would lift its
(Reporting by Thuy Ong; Editing by Shri Navaratnam)