Australia shares seen falling on Wall St; ANZ in line
SYDNEY Aug 16 (Reuters) - Australian shares are set to fall on Friday after a sharp decline on Wall Street, but a rise in gold and iron ore prices may lend some support as investors eye a fresh set of domestic earnings results.
* Local share price index futures fell 0.7 percent, a 78.4-point discount to the underlying S&P/ASX 200 index close. The benchmark fell 0.1 percent on Thursdsay.
* New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index fell 0.4 percent in early trade.
* U.S. stocks had the biggest one-day percentage drop since late June on Thursday in higher-than-average trading volume after poor results and outlooks from Dow components Wal-Mart and Cisco.
* Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd met forecasts with a 12 percent rise in third quarter profit as tight cost controls offset slower growth in key markets.
* Fortescue Metals Group Ltd has signed a $1.15 billion agreement with Formosa to develop its Iron Bridge project.
* BHP Billiton provided an update on a U.S. regulatory investigation concerning previously terminated exploration and development plans and hospitality provided for the 2008 Beijing Olympics as a major sponsor.
* Energy exploration and production company Santos Ltd reported a 3 percent rise in half-year net profit.
* Copper dipped on reports of increased production and uncertainty about when the United States will start trimming its economic stimulus, although growing confidence about a global economic recovery underpinned prices. Gold rose to a near two-month high after a drop in the U.S. dollar.
* Chinese steel futures held near a four-month high on robust demand from end users, but gains in iron ore were capped by worries that higher prices for the raw material could prompt steelmakers to curb purchases.
----------------------MARKET SNAPSHOT @ 2258 GMT ------------
INSTRUMENT LAST PCT CHG NET CHG S&P 500 1661.32 -1.43% -24.070 USD/JPY 97.23 -0.12% -0.120 10-YR US TSY YLD 2.7645 -- 0.000 SPOT GOLD 1364.56 -0.07% -0.990 US CRUDE 107.16 -0.16% -0.170 DOW JONES 15112.19 -1.47% -225.47 ASIA ADRS 141.16 -0.97% -1.38 -------------------------------------------------------------
* Wall St posts biggest drop since June on weak results * Oil hits four-month high as supply fears reign * Gold up 2 pct to above $1,360 on technical breakout * Copper slips on worries over stimulus, rise in output
For a digest of the day's business stories in Australian newspapers, double click on
(Reporting by Thuy Ong; Editing by Richard Pullin)
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