The New Zealand dollar fell back below 69 US cents after measures of risk appetite and global commodity prices declined and optimism grew that US tax reforms are progressing.
The kiwi dollar dropped to 68.98 US cents as at 8am in Wellington from 69.18 cents late yesterday. The trade-weighted index fell to 73.29 from 73.44.
The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index (VIX), sometimes known as Wall Street's fear gauge, fell 1.6 per cent from its highest level in about three weeks overnight while the CRB Index of 19 commonly traded commodities slipped about 0.1 per cent. Prices of dairy products fell for the third straight auction on the GlobalDairyTrade auction last week. Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump tweeted overnight that the US was "getting close" on tax reform.
"The decline in risk appetite has seen commodity currencies under some downward pressure overnight," said Doug Steel, economist at Bank of New Zealand, in a note. "A reduction in risk appetite back to a more normal level represents a key downside risk factor for the NZD."
Steel said there is support for the kiwi dollar at 68.20 US cents to 68.40 cents and topside resistance at about 70.50 cents.
Traders will be watching today for Australian October business confidence and Chinese retail sales and industrial production figures, while tonight Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen is scheduled to talk on a European Central Bank panel along with her European, Japanese and British counterparts.
The kiwi traded at 52.60 British pence from 52.72 pence late yesterday. It rose to 90.44 Australian cents from 90.27 cents, fell to 59.11 euro cents from 59.50 cents and traded at 4.5799 yuan from 4.5977 yuan. It fell to 78.34 yen from 78.61 yen.