The New Zealand dollar rebounded with equity markets mostly holding onto recent gains and investors focusing on a slowing in new infections with the Covid-19 virus.

The kiwi was trading at 60.14 US cents at 5pm in Wellington from 59.58 at the same time yesterday while the trade-weighted index was at 68.71 from 68.29.

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

The latest figures for New Zealand showed only 29 new cases of infection today, down from 50 yesterday and the twin peaks of 89 on April 2 and April 5. Only one person has died in New Zealand with the virus.

Australia's figures are showing a similar tapering but infection rates remain at high levels in Europe and the US. New York now has 151,171 cases of infection and 6,268 deaths with the deaths on Wednesday reaching a daily record.


"The US is the one everyone's keeping an eye on," said Tim Kelleher, head of foreign exchange sales at Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

"They think (US President Donald) Trump is telling porky pies most of the time. It's really bad in some parts of the US, such as New York, but California looks much better," Kelleher said.

California's infections total 19,031 and deaths 505.

"If we pull out of lockdown, maybe not in two weeks, but in three weeks – we've got Anzac day coming up – the risk is that the New Zealand dollar would outperform, relatively speaking, against other currencies," Kelleher said.

Currencies usually regarded as riskier, such as the kiwi and the Aussie, have been trading in tandem with equity markets of late, Kelleher said.

One reason for that is that fund managers are having to re-balance their hedging positions, he said.

The benchmark New Zealand S&P/NZX 50 Index is still down more than 13 per cent year to date, but it has gained more than 9 per cent since March 23.

US stock futures are currently slightly negative but the S&P 500 Index has gained more than 11 per cent in the last five days.


The New Zealand dollar was trading at 96.53 Australian cents from 97.10 cents at 5pm yesterday. It was at 48.55 British pence from 48.35, at 55.34 euro cents from 54.81, at 65.53 yen from 64.87 and at 4.2489 Chinese yuan from 4.2081.

The bid price on the two-year swap rate closed at 0.4400 per cent from 0.4775 yesterday, while 10-year swaps were at 0.9875 per cent from 1.0450.