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AUD / USD
0.7420 – 0.7520
The Australian dollar continued its upward ascendency when valued against its US Counterpart yesterday, breaking through the 75 US Cents mark for the first time in weeks. Whilst struggling to maintain levels up above this critical threshold the past 24 hours have been defined by an upbeat mood across domestic and global equity markets after the S&P 500 posted its best day since the US election. Whilst a roaring iron ore price has also lit a fire under those currencies closely linked to the commodities spectrum, given today' economic calendar is looking thin the Aussie remains set to potentially enjoy a short period of consolidation. Opening stronger versus the Greenback the Australian dollar currently buys 74.57 US Cents.
Great British Pound
GBP / AUD
1.7450 – 1.7650
The Great British Pound suffered a second consecutive daily depreciation through trade on Thursday as investors looked to the USD and US denominated assets following the ECB' surprise QE extension. Despite rallying one percent against the 19 nation shared unit Sterling fell back through 1.26 and touched intraday lows at 1.2552 when valued against the worlds base currency. Cable came under continued pressure following a parliamentary vote backing Prime Minister May' Brexit timetable and proposed March exit disappointing those investors that hoped Brexit may be delayed. Attentions turn now to next week' CPI inflation report and wage growth numbers as key macroeconomic markers governing direction while further Supreme Court commentary surrounding the Governments right to invoke article 50 without parliamentary assent dominates investor focus through the rest of this week.
USD, EUR, JPY
policy statement from ECB President Mario Draghi. The European Central Bank surprised markets by extending its bond buying program through 2017 and confirming that reductions to the size of monthly bond purchases are not to be viewed as tapering but merely a means of keeping borrowing costs lower for longer. The announcement keeps the ECB in the market much longer than anticipated and affirms the Bank' commitment to quantitative easing and looser monetary policy. The Euro plunged some 250 points collapsing through 1.08 and 1.07 to touch intraday lows at 1.06 as investors rushed to square positions and buy back into U.S treasury yields. With the Federal Reserve widely expected to raise rates next week yesterday' ECB announcement only serves to highlight the widening gap between central bank policy outlooks. With little of note on today' domestic docket investors will be largely focused on monitoring positions ahead of the FOMC policy announcement chasing any indications of how many rate increases may be proffered throughout next year.
New Zealand Dollar
NZD / USD
0.7120 – 0.7230
Spurred on by improved risk flows, sentiment surrounding the global growth outlook was given a boost overnight after the ECB announced that it would look to taper quantitative easing efforts come next April. Whilst looking to extend its accommodative stance through to the end of this year before winding back, overall confidence levels have been high over the past 24 hours, a position clearly visible given the performance of equity markets. Having traded as high as 0.7223 when valued against its US Counterpart the Kiwi currently buys 71.76 US Cents.
0.7380 – 0.7500
Contracting by a significant 0.5 percent, economic growth in Australia has come to an abrupt halt during the third quarter of this year. Shrinking by a margin which surpassed even the bleakest of forecasts, yesterday' result is the worst for the domestic economy in almost eight years, representing only the fourth contraction since 1991. Increasing the pressure valve on policy makers to respond the markets initial reaction has been that the RBA will temporary look through the setback, viewing it as a temporary contraction. Dampening demand for the Australian dollar which fell to an intraday low of 0.7416 when valued against its US Counterpart the Aussie opens in a stronger position this morning at rate of 0.7477.
1.6775 – 1.7075
The Great British Pound moved lower through trade on Wednesday relinquishing recent gains and slipping back below 1.2650. Weaker than anticipated Industrial Production data and ongoing Brexit concerns forced investors to take stock of Cable positions obstructing further gains and prompting a short term sell off. With little headline data on hand through trade today Sterling will likely take direction from ongoing Brexit fallout and commentary surround the Supreme Court' approval of parliaments right to initiate article 50 and commence exit negotiations
The U.S Dollar edged lower through trade on Wednesday relinquishing ground against a basket of major currency counterparts on the back of a contraction in treasury yields. Down a quarter of a percent the dollar index came under pressure as investors square positions ahead of today' ECB policy meeting and next weeks Fed reserve FOMC convention. Markets drove the 19 nation shared unit higher correcting the recent sell off and paring losses on expectations the ECB may adopt a more hawkish or upbeat tone. While President Mario Draghi and the ECB are expected to announce an extension in the current quantitative easing program there is an expectation the Board may proffer a timeline of tapering down bond purchases and a hawkish outlook moving into 2017. The Euro moved back through 1.07 and touched intraday highs at 1.0767 while the Dollar moved lower against the Yen falling through 114 touching intraday lows at 113.44. Attentions now turn to the ECB' policy announcement this afternoon as the primary marker for direction through trade on Thursday.
0.7100 – 0.7200
The New Zealand dollar traded within a familiar range when valued against its US Counterpart yesterday supported in most part by positive risk flows as well as a strong session across Asian equity markets. Reaching a 24 hour high of 0.7167 comments from RBNZ Governor Graeme Wheeler in Wellington yesterday only had a minimal impact as did the positive results of an earlier dairy trade auction. Notching up some impressive gains versus its Trans-Tasman rival off the back of figures which showed the Australian economy shrank last quarter, overall moves versus the world' reserve currency have been limited. Opening in a marginally stronger positon the Kiwi currently buys 71.52 US Cents.
0.7400 - 0.7500
In a move which had been largely priced in, The Reserve Bank of Australia announced that the official cash rate would remain at a historic low of 1.5 percent for the month of December. Flagging that economic growth is expected to slow during the back end of this year, rate expectations for 2017 remain equally subdued with markets pricing in only a 12 percent chance of one hike over the next 12 months. Having a muted impact on the Australian dollar, the domestic unit has circulated at levels close to the 0.7450 mark for much of the past 24 hours. Opening steady at a rate of 0.7457 when valued against its US Counterpart the majority of today' price activity is likely to be generated from a key GDP indicator where some economists anticipate that the number will reveal an economic contraction during Q3, something which has transpired only three times over the past 25 years.
1.6900 - 1.7100
The Great British Pound touched an intraday high of 1.2775 against the Greenback as the UK Government continued to try and regain control of the Article 50 appeal in the second day of Supreme Court proceedings. Overnight Prime Minister Theresa May has agreed to publish her Brexit plans in a Labour motion which ensures the plan is released before Article 50 is invoked. We saw a stronger US Dollar weaken the GBP/USD cross, testing the 1.27 support level as the US Non-Manufacturing print was favourable as the America' services industries expanded in November at the fastest rate since October last year. The continuation of downside movement to an eventual low of 1.2680 occurred as Bank of England Governor Mark Carney addressed Liverpool John Moores University. He reiterated the challenges facing the UK economy in the wake of Brexit. The release of UK Home prices and Manufacturing production figures will see further direction for the Sterling.
US Stocks have continued to edge higher in overnight trade whilst asset classes linked to the emerging market space have appreciated amid renewed speculation the European Central Bank will extend its monthly bond purchases. Holding modest gains in a light session, the world' reserve currency has held its ground over the past 24 hours as the euro fell, reaching an eventual low of 1.0698. Void of any tier one data flows there remains a heightened sense of unease hanging over markets at present with the two biggest contributors being both the ECB as well the ongoing elections in Italy. In what' set to be a short-term period defined by a wait and see attitude, outbreaks in price-activity remain a distinct possibility leading into the end of the week. Steady against the Japanese Yen the US Dollar sits at familiar level (114.026).
0.7060 - 0.7150
Continuing to show signs that the US Dollars dramatic rise over the past month, has for the time being run its course, a more subdued Greenback this week has allowed the Kiwi a window of greater stability. Trading between a low of 0.7093 and a high of 0.7160 over the past 24 hours, providing only a limited degree of support for the Kiwi dairy product prices increased at the global dairy trade auction late last night, gaining ground for the 8<sup>th</sup> time from the past nine auctions. Given gains were in line with markets expectations broader catalysts for a move higher have been few and far between this week. Opening marginally lower at a rate of 0.7110 RBNZ Governor Graeme Wheeler is speaking shortly before the Finance Select Committee in Wellington.
0.7420 – 0.7500
During a session dictated by political drama, investors have surprisingly been able to maintain their cool with overseas equity markets rising slightly as did both crude oil and base metals. Tracking back towards near-term resistance close to the 75 US Cents mark, policy makers are largely expected to keep the official cash rate unchanged at its record low of 1.5 percent this afternoon ahead of other key announcements which come in the form of a quarterly GDP print tomorrow. Opening this morning in a marginally stronger position at a rate of 0.7469, any positive rhetoric supported by perceptions that Australia' yield curve has bottomed out could spur some further buying interest in the domestic unit.
1.6925 – 1.7225
The Great British Pound continued to higher through trade on Monday punching through 1.27 and touching intraday highs at 1.2748. Sterling was the benefactor of a strong uptick across the services sector and wider USD weakness as investors continue to amend positions and pull up the recent USD rally having broken key technical resistance handles. UK Services grew at its fastest pace in the last 10 months through November and compliments a string or recently upbeat macroeconomic indicators. Having moved beyond the 100 day moving pound fortunes continue to hang on post Brexit fall out with attentions today turning to the ongoing legal battle to determine when Prime Minister May and the Government can invoke Article 50 and initiate the UK' exit from the European Union.
The U.S dollar moved lower through trade on Monday as investors forced the Euro higher following an Italian referendum on constitutional reform and continued to adjust USD holdings having overshot technical resistance handles. The 19 nation shared unit bounced of 18 month lows and touched intraday highs at 1.0796 when Prime Minister Renzi' plan to rein in the powers of the Senate was resoundingly defeated in a national referendum. Despite moving lower in early trade as investors feared a “No” vote would leave the door open to anti euro campaigners and an early election markets had largely anticipated the result and as initial concerns abated the Euro rallied strongly. Analysts adjusted expectations assuming a caretaker government will step in to take Italy through to its 2018 election and provide some respite to those pushing to leave the Eurozone. The result and subsequent resignation of the Italian Prime Minister creates further uncertainty and amplifies concerns for a an increasing nationalist push and move away from a common currency which could force a Euro sell off as the single unit comes under threat in 2017 ahead of key elections across Europe. Attentions today turn to a quiet macroeconomic docket with direction likely to be governed by sentiment flows and continues positional adjustments.
0.7080 – 0.7180
Initially dropping to an intraday low of 0.7069 when valued against its US Counterpart yesterday, the New Zealand dollar appeared to be on shaky ground following the surprise resignation of Prime Minister John Key. Triggering an early move back into the world' reserve currency, the short-term jolt proved to be a relatively short lived one with the Kiwi recovering as overseas investors entered the mix. Opening in a steadier environment this morning at a rate of 0.7137 the Kiwi' biggest hurdle today is likely to come in the form of tonight' Global Dairy Trade Auction which is expected to deliver another increase in milk powder prices.
0.7410 - 0.7480
Starting the new week in a stronger position when valued against its US Counterpart the Australian dollar has benefited over the course of the past five days from a Greenback which has struggled to recapture its peak. Having traded to its highest point in 14 years, the domestic unit traded as high as 0.7468 on Friday that is despite a US Labour market report which showed a steady improvement in overall hiring conditions during the month of November. Instead being greeted with a session which hinted towards consolidation instead of a push towards fresh highs, the week ahead remains an important one for the Australian dollar with the Reserve Bank set to meet tomorrow, announcing their latest interest rate decision. Opening in a surprisingly strong position versus the US dollar at a rate of 0.7448, today' thin looking economic calendar will change ahead of an otherwise busy looking week.
1.6875 – 1.7275
The Great British Pound edged higher through trade on Friday closing the week strongly and breaking back through 1.27. An uptick in construction data added to a recent string of positive residential data activity and suggests a modicum of stability across macroeconomic numbers. The UK economy has surpassed post Brexit expectations to date and maintained a relatively tight trading range advancing against the Greenback throughout the last month where all other major counterparts have relinquished gains. Profiting from a softer than anticipated wage growth and stable employment gains Sterling touched one month highs at 1.2733. Attentions now turn to Manufacturing Production data Wednesday as the headline docket item through the week ahead.
The U.S Dollar moved lower against a basket of currency through trade on Friday following a softer than anticipated non-farm payroll print. Despite a decline in the underlying unemployment rate, a moderate uptick in newly created jobs and a dip in wage growth were enough to foster uncertainties surrounding the pace of future Fed rate adjustments. The market has largely priced in an interest rate hike next week and is now searching both macroeconomic data and Fed commentary for guidance and signals that may alter the pace of future monetary policy adjustments. A key driver of recent USD gains has been increased expectations Trumps proposed policies will drive domestic growth and inflation and force the Fed to quicken the pace of subsequent policy changes. The Greenback fell back through 113.50 JPY while the Euro edged back toward weekly highs near 1.0675 before confronted by selling pressures on approach to 1.07. Despite posting its first weekly decline in the past 4 weeks many analysts anticipate a second upward push and are simply attributing last week' correction to short term profit taking and repositioning ahead of the Fed rate announcement. Attentions now turn to services data across both the U.S and much of the Eurozone for direction through trade on Monday.
0.7080 – 0.7160
Trading between a low of 0.7085 and a high of 0.7148 the New Zealand dollar did well to advance versus the Greenback during the back end of last week. Following a multi-week rally for the worlds reserve currency, the move higher which has been triggered off the back of expectations of fiscal stimulus is finally starting to show signs of being fundamentally stretched. Still lying very much at the mercy of broader US dollar moves the Kiwi' first real challenge will come on Wednesday with RBNZ Governor Graeme Wheeler testifying before The Financial Select Committee in Wellington. Opening in a stronger position the Kiwi currently buys 71.26 US Cents.
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