Nov 29 (Reuters) - Australian shares rose on Wednesday led by gold stocks, as faster-than-expected slowdown in inflation added to bets against interest rate hikes by the country's central bank.

The S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.5% to 7,046.5 by 0044 GMT. The benchmark ended 0.4% higher on Tuesday.

Data showed Australia's inflation cooled faster than expected in October, while core inflation also edged down, adding to the case against another rate hike as soon as next week.

Reserve Bank of Australia Chief Michele Bullock on Tuesday said a restrictive monetary policy would be needed to dampen demand and rein in sticky inflation.

Globally, investors raised bets that the Federal Reserve would end the year with holding interest rates, and on chances of the U.S. central bank cutting rates to engineer a "soft landing" for the economy.

Leading gains, gold stocks soared 4.1% and were set to rise for a third consecutive session.

Gold prices soared on hopes that the Fed was finished raising rate, helping the sub-index touch its highest since July 19.

Evolution Mining added 4.2%, while Gold Road resources jumped 4.3%.

Miners also surged 0.3%, while heavyweight Fortescue's shares fell 0.8%.

Technology stocks also added 1.5%, tracking an overnight rise in Wall Street peers.

Block's Australia-listed shares rose 3.7% and Xero edged up 1.7%.

Health care and real estate stocks rose 1.5% and 1%, respectively.

NRW Holdings rose 3.8% after the construction and engineering firm forecast strong earnings before interest and tax and revenue growth for fiscal 2024.

New Zealand's benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.8% to 11,321.23, after the country's central bank kept Official Cash Rate (OCR) unchanged at 5.50%.

Fisher and Paykel soared 6.7% after the medical equipment distributor recorded a 12% jump in its half-year net profit.

(Reporting by Poonam Behura in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich)