Australia shares edge up, miners rise on firmer metal prices


(Updates to open)

CANBERRA, Oct 12 (Reuters) - Australian shares inched up 0.1percent early on Friday as a rebound in metal prices liftedindex-heavy mining stocks.

Global miner BHP Billiton Ltdgained 0.5 percentand major rival Rio Tinto Ltdrose more than 1percent.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index

had added 2.7 pointsto 4,486.2 by 2317 GMT, but remained below 14-month highs hitearlier this week. It fell 0.2 percent on Thursday to 4,483.5,its second straight day of losses.

New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 index

climbed 0.1percent to 3,889.0 in early trade.

(Reporting by Maggie Lu Yueyang; Editing by Joseph Radford)

((maggie.luyueyang@thomsonreuters.com)(+61 2 6273 3700)(ReutersMessaging: maggie.luyueyang.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))