Wires

BHP Billiton launches five-year benchmark A$ offer

SYDNEY, Oct 9 (Reuters) - BHP Billiton Finance Limited, thefinance arm of BHP Billiton Limited , on Tuesdaysaid it had launched a new benchmark five-year Australian dollarnote issue.

The offer is expected to price in the near future subject tomarket conditions. Joint lead managers are Australia and NewZealand Banking Group and Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

BHP Billiton Limited is rated A+/Stable/A-1 by Standard &Poor's and A1/Stable/P-1 by Moody's.

(Reporting by Wayne Cole)

((Wayne.Cole@thomsonreuters.com; 612 9373 1813; ReutersMessaging: wayne.cole.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

Keywords: BHP BONDS/