The New Zealand dollar pared some of its overnight gains against the greenback after a monthly survey showed that business confidence remained weak in November but the local currency is expected to resume its rally.
The kiwi traded at 68.55 US cents at 5pm in Wellington from 68.77 US cents at 8am and from 67.94 cents yesterday. The trade-weighted index rose to 74.66 from 74.37 yesterday.
The New Zealand dollar got a lift overnight when US Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell said the US policy rate is now "just below" neutral, leading investors to pare back their expectations of further rate hikes.
It weakened, however, when the ANZ business outlook survey showed New Zealand business confidence remained in the doldrums in November with headline sentiment and firms' views of their own activity largely unchanged from the previous month.
A net 37.1 per cent of firms surveyed in the ANZ business outlook survey for November expect general business conditions to deteriorate in the coming 12 months, unchanged from October.
"The data was not flash...it should have been better," said Tim Kelleher, head of institutional foreign exchange sales at ASB Bank.
However, "the Fed clearly is a bit more data dependent and a bit more reticent and so the kiwi dollar should stay bid on dips," he said.
"The path of least resistance for currencies is the US dollar lower" over the next two to three weeks, he said. "Maybe into early January 2019," he said.
Investors are also waiting for any news on a possible resolution to the US-China trade spat as the leaders of the two countries sit down at talks this weekend at the G20 meeting in Argentina.
The kiwi was at 53.38 British pence from 53.32 pence yesterday and at 60.22 euro cents from 60.17 cents.
The local currency traded at 93.77 Australian cents from 93.88 cents yesterday and at 4.7578 Chinese yuan from 4.7240 yuan. It rose to 77.69 yen from 77.32 yen yesterday.
New Zealand's two-year swap rate was unchanged at 2.09 per cent; the 10-year swaps were unchanged at.90 per cent.