MELBOURNE: Australian shares rose 0.3 percent on Thursday, following a two-day break from trade, with volumes light as final efforts to avert or at least postpone a US "fiscal cliff" get underway.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index rose 13 points to 4,648.0, after rising 0.3 percent in a short session on Monday.
New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index rose 0.2 percent to 4,065.5.
Fortescue Metals Group rose 4.1 percent after announcing it will develop its Kings deposit to complete an iron ore expansion to 155 million tonnes a year, which had been put on hold in September amid a cash crunch.
Center>Copyright Reuters, 2012