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Australia shares to start lower as iron ore miners likely to weigh; NZ down

Dec 27 (Reuters) – Australian shares are set to open lower on Friday in thin holiday trade, with the mining sector seen weighing on the benchmark on lower iron ore prices. Dalian Commodity Exchange’s most-traded iron ore contract , with May 2020 expiry, fell as much as 2% on Thursday — its weakest since Dec. 9. The local share price index futures fell 0.074%, an 84.2-point discount to the underlying S&P/ASX 200 index close. The benchmark ended up 0.1% on Tuesday, after which the markets were shut until Friday. New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index slipped 0.3% to 11,607.31 by 2158 GMT, according to the NZX website. (Reporting by Nikhil Subba in Bengaluru; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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