Wednesday 22nd October 2014
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The New Zealand dollar fell after reports that the European Central Bank may consider taking more steps to stimulate the euro-zone economy, stoking demand for the greenback.
The kiwi fell to 79.55 US cents at 8am, having peaked at 80.33 cents, and down from 79.85 cents yesterday. The trade-weighted index was little changed at 77.21 from 77.26.
The greenback rallied after the ECB bought Italian covered bonds for a second day as part of a plan to boost lending in the region, and after Reuters cited unnamed sources saying the European monetary authority was considering corporate debt purchases to support the regional economy. The ECB said no such decision had been taken. The US dollar was also supported by better-than-expected US housing data.
"The ECB was the one story to write home about," said Imre Speizer, market strategist at Westpac Banking Corp in Auckland. "The kiwi's in a range - there's a slight ascendancy, but it's not really showing any strong direction."
Westpac's Speizer said tomorrow's New Zealand inflation data will probably show weaker consumer price rises, which will likely push the kiwi lower as it cements a view that interest rate hikes will be pushed out.
Traders will be watching Australian inflation figures today, which is expected to show a fairly tepid pace of rising consumer prices across the Tasman and US inflation data during the Northern Hemisphere session.
The kiwi was little changed at 90.59 Australian cents at 8am from 90.57 cents yesterday, and traded at 84.95 yen from 85.09 yen yesterday. It gained to 62.51 euro cents from 62.33 cents. It was little changed at 49.34 British pence from 49.37 pence.
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