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Kiwi bounces back after business survey

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 19/12/2016 Rebecca Howard

The survey comes ahead of Thursday's gross domestic product report. © Dennis Owen / Reuters The survey comes ahead of Thursday's gross domestic product report. The New Zealand dollar consolidated below 70 US cents, recovering some ground from Friday's selloff in New York after a survey showed a pickup in business confidence led by the construction industry.

The kiwi traded at 69.79 US cents as at 5 pm in Wellington, having dropped to a six-month low of 69.27 cents in New York on Friday, from 70.27 cents in Asia at the end of last week.

The trade-weighted index was at 77.58, up from 77.42 in New York and down from 78.05 in Wellington on Friday.

A net 21.7 per cent of firms in the ANZ Business Outlook survey were optimistic about the general outlook for the economy in December, up from 20.5 per cent of firms last month.

A net 31 per cent of firms expect to be more profitable in the coming year, up from 29.4 per cent a month earlier, and a net 25.6 per cent want to raise prices, up from 20.8 per cent in November, the survey showed.

The survey comes ahead of Thursday's gross domestic product report, which is expected to show the economy continues to grow at a steady clip, while traders are also awaiting the latest dairy auction this week.

"It's recovered from Friday's sell-off after the confidence data was better that the previous month," said Stuart Ive, senior client adviser for OM Financial.

The survey showed that businesses, in particular in the construction sector, remain upbeat. While there was some risk the kiwi could fall further, Ive said the latest drop was largely due to an "over-extended USD" and noted that holiday-thinned trading could be exacerbating the move.

The kiwi has been under pressure since the US Federal Reserve raised the target federal funds rate a quarter-point and signalled a more aggressive hiking track for 2017 than expected.

The kiwi rose to 95.64 Australian cents from 95.41 cents on Friday in Wellington.

The local currency slipped to 4.8462 yuan from 4.8810 yuan and declined to 81.96 yen from 83.02 yen. It fell to 66.71 euro cents from 67.36 cents and dropped to 55.91 British pence from 56.62 pence.

New Zealand's two-year swap rate rose two basis points to 2.38 per cent, and 10-year swaps were unchanged at 3.57 per cent.

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