PERTH: The Australian stocks slightly higher at noon, but had pared earlier gains, as investors continued to await a catalyst to drive the local bourse through the 6,000 points mark.
At 12.05pm (AEDT), the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 3.3 points, or 0.06 per cent, at 5,972.4, while the broader All Ordinaries index added 2.6 points, or 0.04 per cent, to 5,937.1.
With investors reluctant to rush over the psychological hurdle, the benchmark index was again volatile in morning trade, touching as high as 5,988.7 points, before slowing towards noon.
Quay Equities head of trading, Tristan K’Nell, said the market was struggling for direction as a lack of significant economic data gave little incentive for investors to enter the market on its drive towards 6,000 points.
“The market may have to wait till April for the psychological 6,000 mark to be broken, with a very limited economic calendar holding the market back,” Mr K’Nell said.
In local economic news on Wednesday, the Reserve Bank of Australia issues it financial stability review, which warned that Australian banks will soon require “behavioural adjustment” to tighten loose mortgage lending, which is overheating house prices and stoking the threat of instability within the economy.