Australia shares may see 5th session of gain on Wall St, metals

December 26, 2013

SYDNEY, Dec 27 (Reuters) - Australian shares may eke out a fifth session of gains on Friday as mining stocks could be supported by a lift in metals prices and Wall Street advanced to record highs overnight, though trading may be subdued post-Christmas break.

* The benchmark rose 0.7 percent on Tuesday to 5,327.2, the highest close since Nov. 29, in a shortened session. Local (Frankfurt: OTQ.F - news) share price index futures was not trading.

* New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index was flat in early trade.

* U.S. stocks gained on Thursday, with the Dow ending at a record high for the sixth straight day, although trading was light following the Christmas holiday.

* Shanghai copper futures rose to four-month highs and U.S. prices extended recent gains on growing confidence about the global economy, year-end covering and the prospect of purchases from China's state reserves.

* Gold gained nearly 1 percent in thin, year-end trade, but was still set for its largest annual loss in three decades as investors switch to rallying equities on optimism about a global economic recovery.

* China Investment Coporation, an investment fund owned by the Chinese government, is backing a Chinese food company that is considering bidding for Australia's Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Holdings Co, the Business Spectator reported on Friday, without citing any sources or naming the company.

* Royal Dutch Shell (Xetra: R6C1.DE - news) 's 23.1 percent stake in Australian oil and gas group Woodside Petroleum Ltd (Other OTC: WOPEF - news) is seen as more likely to be split up and/or sold to institutional shareholders than to go in one piece to a strategic buyer, bankers said.

----------------------MARKET SNAPSHOT @ 2216 GMT ------------

INSTRUMENT LAST PCT CHG NET CHG S&P 500 1842.02 0.47% 8.700 USD/JPY 104.79 0% 0.000 10-YR US TSY YLD 2.9942 -- 0.011 SPOT GOLD 1210.49 0.02% 0.190 US CRUDE 99.62 0.40% 0.400 DOW JONES 16479.88 0.75% 122.33 ASIA ADRS 147.63 0.70% 1.03 -------------------------------------------------------------

* Wall St rises; Dow at record high for 6th day * Crude oil ends higher, gasoline, heating oil support * Gold up on short covering, platinum in biggest gain sinceOct * Copper gains on improving global economy, year-end covering

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(Australia/New Zealand bureaux; +61 2 9373 1800/+64 4 471 4234) (Reporting by Thuy Ong; Editing by Leslie Gevirtz)