Australia shares seen treading water ahead of China data

Mon Mar 31, 2014 5:43pm EDT

MELBOURNE, April 1 (Reuters) - Australian shares are set to
open flat on Tuesday, with investors likely to hold back from
the resources sector ahead of China's release of March factory
activity data at midday, expected to show a small expansion.
    * Local share price index futures inched up 0.1
percent to 5,397.0, a 2.2 point-premium to the underlying
S&P/ASX 200 index close. The benchmark rose 0.5 percent
on Monday.
    * New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index slipped 3.1
points to 5,136.8 in early trade.
    * U.S. stocks rose on Monday, with the S&P 500 ending both
March and the first quarter of 2014 with moderate gains, after
Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen relieved concerns about a
rate hike coming earlier than expected.
    * Copper eased after earlier hitting a two-week high, as
investors proved wary of China's tighter credit conditions,
despite speculation Beijing would move to stimulate its economy.
    * China is due to release the official manufacturing
purchasing managers' index (PMI) at 0100 GMT. The median
forecast of 14 economists is for the PMI to rise to 50.3 from
February's 50.2, a Reuters poll showed.
    * The Reserve Bank of Australia holds its monthly policy
meeting on Tuesday and is expected to keep rates at a record low
of 2.5 percent. 
----------------------MARKET SNAPSHOT @ 2135 GMT ------------
                    INSTRUMENT   LAST       PCT CHG   NET CHG
S&P 500                   1872.34      0.79%    14.720
USD/JPY                   103.2        0.01%     0.010
10-YR US TSY YLD     2.719           --     0.007
SPOT GOLD                 1283.59     -0.77%    -9.910
US CRUDE                  101.58      -0.09%    -0.090
DOW JONES                 16457.66     0.82%    134.60
ASIA ADRS                142.53       0.95%      1.34
  * Wall St rises on Yellen's view; S&P logs modest Q1 gain 
  * Crude futures slip in volatile end-quarter trading     
  * Gold down for day; posts first monthly decline in 2014 
  * Copper stalls after 2-week high, aluminium gains     
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 (Australia/New Zealand bureaux; +61 2 9373 1800/+64 4 471 

 (Editing by Lisa Shumaker)