SYDNEY, May 31 (Reuters) - Australian shares are set to edge higher on Friday, buoyed by gains on Wall Street after weak U.S. economic data eased fears of a wind-down in stimulus policies, while firmer copper prices may support miners.
* Local share price index futures rose 0.4 percent, a 30.3-point premium to the underlying S&P/ASX 200 index close. The benchmark fell 0.9 percent to a six-week low on Thursday, and is down 5 percent so far this month.
* New Zealand’s benchmark NZX 50 index rose 0.5 percent in early trade.
* U.S. stocks rose on Thursday, rebounding from the previous session’s losses, as tepid economic data eased concerns the U.S. Federal Reserve would begin to gradually scale back its policy of stimulating growth.
* Copper rose almost 1 percent on Thursday as investors bet on improved imports by the biggest consumer China and as data from top producer Chile showed April output fell from a year earlier due to strikes and production problems.
* Gold rose to a two-week high, buoyed by a fall in the dollar on improved prospects the Federal Reserve will keep its monetary stimulus in place.
* Australia’s Sundance Resources will conclude discussions with potential partners on its $4.7 billion Africa iron ore project by June and announce a chosen partner three months later, the firm’s chief operations officer told Reuters.
* Australia’s private sector credit for April will be released at 0130 GMT on Friday.
INSTRUMENT LAST PCT CHG NET CHG S&P 500 1654.41 0.37% 6.050 USD/JPY 101.02 0.3% 0.300 10-YR US TSY YLD 2.119 — 0.000 SPOT GOLD 1414.64 0.10% 1.390 US CRUDE 93.54 -0.07% -0.070 DOW JONES 15324.53 0.14% 21.73 ASIA ADRS 139.28 0.56% 0.78 ——————————————————————————————-
* Wall St ends up on optimism Fed stimulus to remain * Crude oil mixed, swayed by views on economy and Fed * Gold hits two-week high as data quells Fed taper talk * Copper up on China demand prospects, tighter supply
For a digest of the day’s business stories in Australian newspapers, double click on (Reporting by Thuy Ong; Editing by Richard Pullin)