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NZ commodity prices extend decline for sixth month, gains in kiwi dollar terms

Thursday 1st December 2011

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New Zealand commodity prices fell for a sixth month in November, led by declines in the price of butter, cheese and aluminium.

The ANZ Commodity Price index fell 1 percent to 284.6 last month, though a sharp fall in the New Zealand dollar meant it gained 1.2 percent in local currency terms to 201.5.

The price for local raw materials has dropped more than 10 percent from a peak in March though the overall index is 27 percent above the 10-year average of the past decade in NZ dollar terms, and 65 percent above the average in world price terms.

ANZ New Zealand economist Steve Edwards said 12 of the 17 commodities monitored declined, with just one recording a lift in price and four unchanged.

Butter prices dropped 6 percent from a month earlier, while cheese and aluminium prices declined 5 percent. Wool prices and wood pulp prices fell 4 percent, logs and skins retreated by 2 percent, and casein, kiwifruit, lamb, lumber and beef prices dipped 1 percent.

The price of whole milk powder gained 4 percent in the month, while seafood, apples, skim milk powder and venison prices were unchanged.

Earlier today, government data showed New Zealand’s terms of trade, which shows the amount of imports that can be funded by a set quantity of exports, fell 0.7 percent in the three months ended Sept. 30, due to falling dairy, forestry and meat prices.

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