August 31, 2017 / 10:25 PM / a year ago

Australia shares set to track U.S. stocks higher, NZ flat

    Sept 1 (Reuters) - Australian shares are expected to open
higher on Friday, taking cues from an upbeat close on Wall
Street in the previous session, while strong metal prices are
likely to lift miners.
    U.S. stocks ended higher on Thursday as investors took heart
from economic data and U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin's
comments that President Donald Trump's administration has a
detailed plan on tax reform and is on track to implement it by
    Commodity prices also rose on Thursday, with Chinese rebar
steel futures climbing nearly 2 percent and copper prices at
near three-year highs after data showed growth in the country's
manufacturing sector sped up in August.                   
    The local share price index futures          rose 0.1
percent or 5 points to 5,693, a 21.5-point discount to the
underlying S&P/ASX 200 index         close. The benchmark rose 
0.8 percent on Thursday.
    New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index         was flat in
early trade.

 (Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru)
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