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Aussie dlr near three-week lows, RBA in focus

SYDNEY/WELLINGTON, Oct 2 (Reuters) - The Australian dollar languished near three-week lows on Tuesday as investors waited to see if the Reserve Bank of Australia would bite the bullet and cut interest rates at its monthly policy meeting.

* The RBA's statement is due out at 0430 GMT and interbank futures show around a two-in-three chance of a 25 basis point-cut to 3.25 percent. Economists are less convinced, with 13 of 19 surveyed by Reuters forecasting the RBA to keep rates on hold.

* The Aussie at $1.0368, from Monday's late local level of $1.0338, having skidded to $1.0326 in the previous session, its lowest since Sept 11.

* A decision to hold rates could underpin the Aussie and squeeze short positions to $1.0450. Then again, if it stays pat the bank might use its statement to highlight an easing bias, so tempering the currency's gain.

* A rate cut would likely weaken the local dollar across the board with a possible test and break of key support at $1.0325 ahead of a slide all the way to $1.0165, its lowest since July.

* The New Zealand dollar keeps to recent ranges, inching up to around $0.8283, from $0.8274 in the morning.

* The kiwi hit a six-month high of $0.8357 on Friday and has gained around 11 percent over the past four months, but may be running out of puff. Near term kiwi support at $0.8250 and below that $0.8230, with first hurdle at $0.8310 and then $0.8325.

* Kiwi also aided after ANZ Bank's commodity price index posted its biggest gain in 18 months in September, lifted by strong dairy prices. That came as no surprise after recent rebounds at dairy price auctions.

* Aussie last around NZ$1.2505 , near a one-year low of NZ$1.2456 on Monday.

* The euro holding overnight gains versus the Antipodeans, pushing up to A$1.2435 , well off last week's trough of A$1.2320. Last at NZ$1.5564 , having touched NZ$1.5451 on Friday.

* Australian government bond futures ease a touch following hefty gains. The three-year contract edges 0.03 points lower to 97.650, while the 10-year contract is down 0.02 points to 97.100, after touching a two-month peak on Monday.

* New Zealand government bonds firmer, with yields three basis points lower along the curve.

((Australia/New Zealand bureaux)(+61 2 9373 1800/+64 4 802 7980))

Keywords: MARKETS AUSTRALIA NEWZEALAND/FOREX