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Australian shares set for steady opening; NZ flat
March 9, 2017 / 10:31 PM / 9 months ago

Australian shares set for steady opening; NZ flat

    March 10 (Reuters) - Australian shares look set to open
steady on Friday, with financials gaining on expectations the
Federal Reserve will raise U.S. interest rates next week and
resource stocks falling after a further decline in commodity
    The local share price index futures          was up 0.1
percent, or 7 points, to 5758, a 16.8-point premium to the
underlying S&P/ASX 200 index         close. The benchmark ended
0.32 percent lower on Thursday.
    Oil prices slid again on Thursday, after falling on
Wednesday to their lowest this year, as record U.S. crude
inventories fed doubts about whether OPEC-led supply cuts would
reduce a global glut      . Metals followed suit with iron ore
and steel futures in China at one-month lows on Thursday
    A major point of focus on Friday will be U.S. jobs data,
which should provide more clarity on whether the Fed will raise
rates at its meeting on March 14-15. Economists now expect rates
a rate increase at the meeting and two more later this year,
according to latest Reuters poll             .
    New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index         was flat at
7139.67 in early trade.
    For a summary of overnight action across global markets,
double click on          
    For a digest of the day's business stories in Australian 
newspapers, double click on            

 (Reporting by Anusha Ravindranath in Bengaluru, editing by
Larry King)

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