NZ dollar falls below 71 US cents

By Sophie Boot

Photo / File
Photo / File

The New Zealand dollar fell below 71 US cents after the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed to supply cuts, driving up the price of crude oil and adding to positive sentiment for the greenback.

The kiwi dollar fell to 70.81 US cents as at 5pm in Wellington from 71.44 cents late yesterday. The trade-weighted index slipped to 78.04 from 78.48.

Crude oil was recently at US$52.08 a barrel, having tumbled enough through 2014 and 2015 to have a deflationary effect. It sunk to US$27.10 a barrel in January this year. Higher fuel prices add to the story that US inflation will pick up if the pace of the US economy quickens under President-elect Donald Trump's policies.

An early signal of US growth will come with the release on Friday of US non-farm payrolls for November, which is expected to show 165,000 jobs added last month. US Commerce Department overnight showed consumer spending rose 0.3 percent in October.

"There was stronger US data and the unknown of OPEC is out of the way," said Martin Rudings, senior dealer at OMF.

"That was a hindrance to the strong US dollar trend because there was a mindset they (OPEC) couldn't get a deal together."

He said the New Zealand dollar "is going to be under pressure if the US dollar continues to strengthen, which I think it will," Rudings said. OMF is expecting two interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve in 2017. The Fed is widely expected to hike rates at this month's meeting.

The kiwi didn't move much after figures showed New Zealand's terms of trade fell in the third quarter, reflecting a decline in the value, price and volume of exports. The quake-damaged Statistics New Zealand wasn't able to provide seasonally adjusted numbers. Quotable Value said the average value of a New Zealand home rose 12 percent to $624,675 in November from a year earlier, the weakest annual growth rate since May.

See live rates for the NZ-US $ below. Click for more information:NzForex Foreign Exchange Transfers

The kiwi fell to 56.56 British pence from 57.24 pence late yesterday. It gained to 95.67 Australian cents from 95.56 cents and fell to 4.8837 yuan from 4.9169 yuan. The local currency declined to 66.83 euro cents from 67.21 cents. rose to 80.86 yen from 80.38 yen.

The local currency rose to 80.86 yen from 80.38 yen and is now trading at its highest level against its Japanese counterpart since the start of the year.

The two-year swap rate was unchanged at 2.24 percent and the 10-year swap rate rose 6 basis points to 3.29 percent.

- BusinessDesk

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