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  • The Fed is widely expected to cut rates by a quarter of a percentage point this week.
  • Australian shares are set to open slightly lower as investors cautiously await the US Federal Reserve's rate decision.
  • New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.3pc in early trade.

 

Australian shares are set to open slightly lower as investors cautiously await the US Federal Reserve's rate decision, while energy stocks are expected to rise on strong prices after an attack on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia.

The Fed is widely expected to cut rates by a quarter of a percentage point this week.

A greater focus will be on clues about if and how much further the Fed will go.

An attack on Saudi Arabia's oil facilities over the weekend knocked out more than 5pc of global crude supply, fuelling expectations that oil prices may rise by $5 to $10 per barrel on Monday.

The local share price index futures fell 0.1pc, a 2.2-point discount to the underlying S&P/ASX 200 index. The benchmark rose 0.2pc on Friday.

New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.3pc in early trade.