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Monday December 8, 2008 - 19:47:06 GMT
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FX Research - Morning Report

Morning Report Tuesday 9 December 2008


News and views

US equities once again were impressive, the S&P500 posting a 3% gain at time of writing. With no US data released, the move was likely driven by the stimulatory package Barack Obama started unveiling over the weekend. All the major European and Asian bourses gained, the DAX and CAC leading the way at +8% and +9%, respectively. Commodities also took heart, Brent crude oil recovering USD 2 to $41, and gold adding $14 to $771.


The NZD jumped to a 6-day high of around 0.5475 at the start of the European session, and has more or less held that area, currently 0.5440. The break above the key 0.54 level, and holding those gains, suggests global markets are more willing to assume risk since the weekend.


The AUD also broke to a high not seen since mid-November, almost touching 67 cents. It outperformed the NZD early, reaching 1.2290 area which was last seen in September 2008.


EUR traded higher at the European opening, first to 1.2920, followed by another push during New York hours to around 1.2955. Previous resistance of 1.3080 will be watched closely this week. Weak European data was ignored: European investor sentiment, German industrial production, and UK producer prices all fell sharply. The


JPY initially weakened against the USD to around 93.90, amid the global optimism, but has returned to its 92.50 – 93 recent range.


No US data to report.


Japan Oct current account surplus showed a largely seasonal narrowing to ¥961bn from ¥1,498bn. This included the trade surplus ¥146bn, in line with the merchandise trade data, offset by deficits in services and transfers. A ¥1,209bn income surplus was responsible for most of the net current account surplus. Oct data showed exports down 7.3%yr on the global downturn, while imports growth moderated to 8.3%yr from 33.4%yr the month. The –¥117bn in net transfers, and the services balance at –¥278bn continued within their recent range.


European investor sentiment continued to fall in Dec, dropping from –36.4 to –42.3 a new record low for the six year old survey. The survey was conducted late last week, so the latest news on US jobs and the ECB’s rate cut would have been at the forefront of investors’ minds.


German industrial production drops 2.1% in Oct. The collapse in orders in both September and October is now showing up in sharply weaker output. Annual growth of –3.8% yr is the lowest in more than six years.


UK producer prices decelerating sharply. Despite some back revisions which saw the annual rates revised higher, both input and output price inflation continued to slow sharply, with input prices dropping from 15.4% yr to 7.5% yr and output prices down from 6.7% yr to 5.1% yr. The exception was core output prices which edged up from 5.0% yr to 5.1% yr. But the overwhelming message is that pressures on retail prices from the factory sector are diminishing rapidly.


Canadian housing starts drop 18.8% in Nov. The fall was led by multiples down 29% but single family starts fell 9%, their third consecutive decline, so the underlying story is one of weakening activity in the sector.



NZD’s convincing upwards break of 0.54, when combined with the widespread rallies in equities and commodities last night, points to a decline in risk aversion for the day ahead. Support today should be 0.54, the currency trading with a firm tone towards 0.5590.


Events Today

Country Release Last Forecast

Aus Nov NAB Business Survey –11 –

RBA Governor Stevens Speaks – –

US Dec IBD-TIPP Economic Optimism 50.8 45.0

Oct Pending Home Sales –4.6% –3.5%

Jpn Q3 GDP %qtr –0.1% –0.2%

Nov Machine Tool Orders %yr -40.0% –

Ger Dec ZEW Economic Sentiment –53.5 –60.0

UK Nov BRC Retail Monitor %yr –2.2% –3.0%

Nov RICS House Price Net Balance % –82% –85%

Oct Global Visible Trade Balance £bn –7.5 –7.5

Oct Industrial Production –0.2% –0.4%

Oct House Prices %yr –5.1% –6.5%

Can Bank of Canada Rate Decision 2.25% 1.75%


Latest Research Papers/Publications

• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (8 December)

• RBNZ MPS Review (4 December)

• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (1 December)

• RBNZ MPS Preview (28 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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