* New Zealand down after 11 consecutive sessions of gains
* RBA likely to lower cash rate by 15 bps - Goldman Sachs
* Miners hit over 3-wk high; Whitehaven Coal tops benchmark
Oct 15 (Reuters) - Australian shares rose on Thursday after
the central bank signalled it was considering an interest rate
cut, while New Zealand stocks looked set to snap their
11-session winning streak.
The S&P/ASX 200 index climbed 0.61% to 6,216.7 by
0016 GMT, led by mining, financials and energy stocks.
In New Zealand, the benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index was
down 0.5% to 12,476.07, after adding 6.8% since September-end in
the run-up to Oct. 17 elections.
Market participants in Australia cheered central bank
Governor Philip Lowe's remarks that its board was mulling
options to support jobs and businesses, adding that it felt
monetary easing would become more effective as coronavirus curbs
Goldman Sachs said in a note that the Reserve Bank of
Australia's (RBA) dovish tone indicates it may lower the cash
rate by 15 basis points to 0.1% and announce a new A$100 billion
($71.4 billion) quantitative easing programme to reduce
long-term yields at its November meeting.
The central banker's remarks sent the Australian dollar
sliding to a one-week low of $0.7129 against the
Leading gains on the benchmark index, the metals and mining
index jumped 1.7% to its highest in more than three
Rio Tinto, the world's largest iron ore miner,
firmed 2% a day before its quarterly production results, while
rival BHP Group Ltd added 3.6%.
Financials stocks, which account for a major chunk
of the index, rose 0.3%.
Westpac Banking Corp and National Australia Bank
, two of the "Big Four" lenders, gained 0.2% and 0.3%,
Energy stocks climbed on the back of an overnight
jump in crude prices and Whitehaven Coal's near 7%
The country's biggest independent coal producer, Whitehaven
Coal, rallied to the top of the ASX200 index after reporting
strong quarterly coal production and sales.
On the New Zealand bourse, A2 Milk Company Ltd and
Vista Group International Ltd were the top percentage
losers, down 2.71% and 2.6% respectively.
($1 = 1.4004 Australian dollars)
(Reporting by Anushka Trivedi in Bengaluru; Editing by