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US in driving seat as NZD sticks to US70c

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 2/04/2017 Jonathan Underhill

The New Zealand dollar was little changed below US70 cents, having traded in a US1c range for more than a fortnight, as it starts a week with little on the local calendar and the focus likely to be on US data.

The kiwi traded at US69.96c as at 8am on Monday in Wellington from US70.08c in late New York trading on Friday and from US69.86c in Asia at the end of last week. The trade-weighted index was at 75.99 from 76.06 on Friday in New York.

The GlobalDairyTrade auction may be the biggest local event this week, with the price of whole milk powder having unexpectedly gained in the last auction two weeks ago and a Rabobank survey showing fewer farmers were pessimistic in the first quarter.

The ANZ Commodity Price survey for March, due this week, will also highlight the fortunes of New Zealand's export commodities.

But the US has a data-heavy week, starting with manufacturing surveys tonight, trade and factory orders on Tuesday. The March ADP payrolls and non-farm payrolls round out the week.

"The currency has spent much of the last two weeks in a tight 0.6970-0.7070 range," said BNZ currency strategist Jason Wong.

"It looks like another week ahead with the USD in the driving seat, with not much on the local data calendar to look forward to."

The New Zealand short-term interest rate market "remains tightly range bound, with the short end of the curve well-anchored by expectations of little change in monetary policy for some time," he said.

On Monday morning, the kiwi dollar slipped to 91.57 Australian cents from A91.78c and traded at 55.82 British pence from 55.89p. It decreased to 65.59 euro cents from 65.71c, slipped to 77.93 yen from 78.03 yen and fell to 4.8155 yuan from 4.8244 yuan.

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