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Australia shares extend rise, miners lead

Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 8:28 PM ET

(Updates to open)

SYDNEY, Oct 5 (Reuters) - Australian shares rose 0.5 percent to 14-month highs early on Friday, with mining stocks rising as the market was supported by a fourth day of gains on Wall Street ahead of the U.S. payrolls report later in the day.

Top miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto both

rose 0.7 percent in early trade.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index

gained 22.8 points to 4,475.1 by 0017 GMT. The benchmark rose 0.3 percent on Thursday to 4,452.4, its strongest finish since August 1, 2011.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index

rose 0.4 percent or 16.1 points to 3,898.1.

(Reporting by Thuy Ong; Editing by John Mair)

((thuy.ong@thomsonreuters.com)(+61 2 9373 1236))

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Keywords: MARKETS AUSTRALIA STOCKS/