The New Zealand dollar was little changed, having earlier risen above 71 US cents as crude oil led gains in commodity prices.

The kiwi dollar traded at 70.68 US cents at 8:30am in Wellington, and earlier touched 71.03 cents, from 70.76 cents late yesterday. The trade-weighted index was at 77.69 from 77.68.

The CRB Index of 19 commonly traded commodities has gained about 5 per cent from its lows of mid-November, while crude oil gained almost 2 per cent overnight.

While the fundamentals of the New Zealand economy and the kiwi dollar are relatively strong, they have taken a backseat to speculation about the likely impact of Donald Trump's US presidency.


"Global factors continue to be in the driver's seat for the NZD," said Con Williams, agri economist at ANZ Bank New Zealand. "The USD is weakening into the month end creating some near-term upside but the NZD's inability to push through 71 USD yesterday spells another day of treading water".

With little domestic data to set the tone, traders are awaiting Japanese retail sales today, which are expected to show a 1.1 per cent gain for October, and the second reading of US third-quarter gross domestic product tonight, as well as speeches from Federal Reserve governors Jerome Powell and New York Fed president William Dudley.

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

Traders are also looking ahead to the Reserve Bank's financial stability report tomorrow, after which Wheeler is scheduled to hold a media conference. The RBNZ's November monetary policy statement projects a rebound in inflation this quarter, pushing the annual rate back within the bank's target range and making further rate cuts unlikely.

The week rounds out with US payrolls on Friday, which are expected to show the economy added 165,000 jobs last month, enough to keep the Federal Reserve on track to hike interest rates this month.

The kiwi dollar slipped to 94.48 Australian cents from 94.67 cents late yesterday. It rose to 56.90 British pence from 56.57 pence and gained to 66.70 euro cents from 66.43 cents. It fell to 4.8801 yuan from 4.8865 yuan and traded at 79.30 yen from 79.24 yen.