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Australia shares track Wall Street higher, bullion shines

May 31 (Reuters) - Australian stocks edged higher on Monday, as markets caught the tailwind from a bounce on Wall Street after investors tempered fears of inflationary pressure, while strong commodity prices lifted local miners and gold shares.

The S&P/ASX 200 index was up 0.2% at 7,188.6 points by 0028 GMT, after closing 1.2% higher at a record peak on Friday.

Sentiment was helped by Wall Street’s higher finish on Friday as investors shrugged off a stronger-than-expected inflation reading.

Gold stocks rose 1.6% to lead gains as the bullion popped above the $1,900 mark after data showed U.S. consumer prices surged in April and boosted bullion’s appeal as an inflation hedge. [GOL/}

Gold miners Newcrest Mining and Northern Star Resources added 1.5% and 1.8%, respectively.

Mining stocks added 0.7%, with index heavyweights Rio Tinto, BHP Group and Fortescue Metals all rising between 0.4% and 1.6%.

Iron ore futures had closed firmer on Friday after top steel producer China’s statements on steel output plans sparked worries of a tight supply.

Banking stocks were up 0.2%, with the “big four” lenders gaining between 0.1% to 0.2%.

Bucking the trend, energy stocks lost nearly 1.3% even as oil prices ended at two-year peaks on Friday.

Software firm Nuix Ltd shed 13% to hit a record low and lead losses on the benchmark on slashing its full-year revenue forecast.

Link Administration Holdings, PEXA’s largest shareholder, fell 4.9% after the company said it would take the online real estate firm public instead of accepting KKR & Co’s takeover bid for the unit.

In New Zealand, the benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.4% to 12,228.37 points with cancer diagnostics firm Pacific Edge Ltd being the top performer on the bourse.

In other markets, Japan’s Nikkei was down 0.3% at 29,065.02 and S&P 500 E-minis futures were up 4.8 points, or 0.11%.

$1 = 1.2977 Australian dollars Reporting by Yamini C S in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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