New Zealand commodity prices rose for the first time in eight months in January, led by aluminium and dairy products, though the high kiwi dollar wiped out the benefits in local currency terms.
The ANZ Commodity Price Index rose 1.2 per cent in January, having fallen 9.8 per cent in the previous seven months. The ANZ NZD Commodity Price Index fell 2.9 per cent to a 14-month low, reflecting the strengthening kiwi dollar.
Nine of the 17 commodity types rose in the latest month, while three fell and five were unchanged. Aluminium gained 6 per cent in January, snapping an eight-month slide. Cheese rose 5 per cent, while skim milk powder and butter gained 3 per cent.
Lamb prices rose 2 per cent after three months of declines. Beef, logs, skins and whole milk powder all rose about 1 per cent.
The price of wool fell 7 per cent and has declined in five of the past six months, ANZ said. The price of wool is now 19 per cent below its peak of July last year. Kiwifruit prices fell 2 per cent and venison dropped 1 per cent.
The New Zealand dollar traded recently at 83.20 US cents, the highest since September. The trade weighted index was at 72.93, a five-month high.