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Wednesday November 12, 2008 - 20:33:13 GMT
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FX Research - Morning Report

Morning Report Thursday 13 November 2008


News and views

Overnight price action was a virtual rerun of the previous two days, with riskier currencies holding their ground against the USD until the minute that US equity markets opened. Equities fell heavily after US Treasury Secretary Paulson said that buying toxic mortgage securities was no longer the best use of the $US700bn bail-out fund; without a clear sense of how the funds will be used, investors retreated once more from risky assets. The broad USD index gained around 0.5% for the day, and is closing in again on the two-year highs reached in October.


NZD held within a 0.57-0.58 range until the US equity market open, then promptly dropped as low as 0.5560 before recovering back to 0.5610 this morning. Trade in the NZD remains very thin and gappy and is unlikely to improve as the Christmas period approaches.


AUD slid from 0.6600 to a two-week low of 0.6350 during the New York session. The NZD/AUD cross was largely range-bound but ended the day on its highs around 0.8770.


EUR fell early in the overnight session on talk of central banks selling euro to rebalance their reserves portfolios, having earlier sold USD to prop up their currencies. EUR was relatively stable during the NY session though, and even eked out some small gains.


GBP was hit hard after the Bank of England’s inflation report noted that inflation would severely undershoot the target in the absence of rate cuts. The currency was trashed further on the weak US equities, falling below 1.50 to reach a new eight-year low.


No US data to report. However a speech by outgoing Treasury Secretary Paulson generated plenty of interest. He plans to divert part of the $700bn TARP (financial rescue plan) away from troubled mortgage assets, instead using it to help boost the availability of consumer credit. He remains unwilling to use it as aid for the ailing automakers, which could lead to problems getting the second tranche of the bailout package approved by Congress, given that House speaker Pelosi wants immediate action in that area.


Euroland industrial production down 1.6% in Sep. We already knew that German IP had fallen nearly 4% so this was no surprise. Output was down 2.4% yr, its steepest annual pace of decline since 2002.


Bank of England signals further rate cuts. The BoE’s quarterly inflation report saw the central projection for the CPI revised down by the most ever in the 11 years that the Bank has had policy independence. Also, the central projection on a constant rate assumption in two years time was just 1%, a full 1% below the 2% target, the biggest forecast target “miss” in that time. Governor King stressed that uncertainties were especially acute this time around and they included unknowns like the extent of imminent fiscal stimulus. Nevertheless markets interpreted the report and comments as a strong signal that rates will be cut sharply further in December. In response to a question about whether the bank rate could be cut to 0%, he said that “ we are prepared to cut it to whatever level is necessary”. The Bank now expects the UK economy to be in recession until well into 2009. In related news, UK unemployment rose a further 37k in October.



We are neutral on NZD in the short term. News from the corporate world is dominating investor sentiment at the moment, but we feel this should be at the least balanced out by the extent of fiscal stimulus and other government support that is being unleashed in the wake of the G20 meeting. Looking ahead, NZD will still need to remain below its long-term average for an extended period to soften the blow of a weaker world economy.


Events Today

Country Release Last Forecast

NZ Q3 Real Retail Sales –1.5% –1.5%

Sep Retail Sales 0.4% 0.6%

Aus Nov MI Consumer Inflation Expectations 4.4% –

Nov WBC-MI Unemployt Expectations 11.6% –

Q3 Full-Time AWOTE %qtr 0.7% –

US Sep Trade Balance $bn –59.1 –56.0

Initial Jobless Claims w/e 8/11 481k 488k

Oct Federal Budget $bn –92.0 –

Fedspeak: Stern, Plosser

Jpn Oct Corp. Goods Prices %yr 6.8% 5.5%

Ger Q3 GDP %yr –0.5% –0.3%

Can Sep Trade Balance C$bn 5.8 5.3


Latest Research Papers/Publications

• NZ Economic Overview November 2008 (11 November)

• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (4 November)

• NZ Q3 HLFS Review (6 November)

• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (4 November)

• NZ Q3 LCI and QES Review (3 November)

These papers/publications are available on Online Research on Westpac

Institutional Bank’s website (




Westpac Banking Corporation ABN 33 007 457 141 incorporated in Australia (NZ division). Information current as at 14 November 2007. All customers please note that this information has been prepared without taking account of your objectives, financial situation or needs. Because of this you should, before acting on this information, consider its appropriateness, having regard to your objectives, financial situation or needs. Australian customers can obtain Westpac's financial services guide by calling +612 9284 8372, visiting or visiting any Westpac Branch. The information may contain material provided directly by third parties, and while such material is published with permission, Westpac accepts no responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of any such material. Except where contrary to law, Westpac intends by this notice to exclude liability for the information. The information is subject to change without notice and Westpac is under no obligation to update the information or correct any inaccuracy which may become apparent at a later date. Westpac Banking Corporation is regulated for the conduct of investment business in the United Kingdom by the Financial Services Authority. © 2004 Westpac Banking Corporation. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. The forecasts given in this document are predictive in character. Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure that the assumptions on which the forecasts are based are reasonable, the forecasts may be affected by incorrect assumptions or by known or unknown risks and uncertainties. The ultimate outcomes may differ substantially from these forecasts.




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Mon 10 Sep 2018
AA 08:30 GB- GDP, Trade, Output
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