Australia stocks higher at the close of trade; S&P/ASX 200 up 0.36%

Australia stocks were higher after the close of a trade on Wednesday, as gains in the Consumer Staples, IT and Consumer Discretionary sectors led shares higher.

At the close in Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.36%.

The S&P/ASX 200 VIX, which measures the implied volatility of S&P/ASX 200 options, was down 1.41% to 11.507.

Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the Sydney Stock Exchange by 650 to 529, and 377 ended unchanged.

The best performers of the session on the S&P/ASX 200 were A2 Milk Company Ltd (ASX:A2M), which rose 8.00% or 1.160 points to trade at 15.660 at the close. Meanwhile, Premier Investments Ltd (ASX:PMV) added 5.32% or 0.810 points to end at 16.040, and Pinnacle Investment Management Group Ltd (ASX:PNI) was up 4.94% or 0.220 points to 4.670 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Pilbara Minerals Ltd (ASX:PLS), which fell 4.85% or 0.025 points to trade at 0.490 at the close. Eclipx Group Ltd (ASX:ECX) declined 3.26% or 0.050 points to end at 1.485 and South32 Ltd (ASX:S32) was down 2.55% or 0.080 points to 3.060.

Gold Futures for August delivery was down 0.49% or 6.85 to $1393.65 a troy ounce. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Crude oil for delivery in August rose 1.57% or 0.91 to hit $58.74 a barrel, while the September Brent oil contract rose 1.06% or 0.68 to trade at $64.84 a barrel.

The US Dollar Index Futures was up 0.04% at 97.132.

AUD/USD was down 0.13% to 0.6918, while AUD/JPY fell 0.07% to 75.33.