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Tuesday February 3, 2009 - 20:27:23 GMT
Westpac Institutional Bank - www.westpac.co.nz

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Forex Research - Morning Report

Morning Report Wednesday 4 February 2009

 

News and views

Several international events yesterday combined to put a floor in risk-aversion for now. Yesterday afternoon, Japan announced it would start buying shares in its banks, and Australia cut its cash target rate by 100bp to 3.25%, as well as releasing a fiscal stimulus package. Then in the US, pending home sales data took the market by positive surprise, and the US Federal Reserve extended again its emergency lending programs and swap lines to 30 October (from 30 April). Standard & Poor’s downgrade of the state of California, to A, was ignored by the markets. Equity indices across the globe were higher – Eurozone +2%, and the S&P500 +1.3% currently. WTI oil is little changed, but copper gained +6%. US treasuries took the Fed news badly, the 10 year yield up 10bp to 2.82%.

 

The NZD was driven higher by the above events, the rally well due after the past month’s 10 cent flogging. It did dip to 0.5015 before the positive US news, but then rose over a cent to 0.5030, and is currently trying to probe higher.

 

AUD had its own fiscal stimulus as an additional booster, and roared from 0.6340 to 0.6540 during the US session. The AUD/NZD cross strengthened as a result, to 1.27.

 

EUR rose from 1.28 to 1.30, despite weaker German retail sales and PPI inflation adding to the case for another rate cut at the ECB’s March meeting. European auto sales were very weak. GBP held around 1.42, before a 2 cent rise, shrugging off the estimated GBP1 billion cost of yesterday’s London snow storm. JPY’s 89 to 90 range is still intact, the quick dip to 88.60 aside.

 

US pending home sales jump 6.3% in Dec. This gain, following three consecutive monthly falls in sales, was large but not entirely unexpected (we were looking for +2%). Pending sales measure essentially the same sales as the existing home sales measure (but at an earlier stage of the sale process), and the pending data needed to “catch up” to less weak existing sales, recently boosted by the distressed sales of foreclosed properties. Temporarily lower mortgage rates in December may also have helped. These figures contrast starkly with all measures of the new housing market, which continues to implode (in part because of the sale of cheap repossessed houses recorded here).

 

German retail sales down 0.2% in Dec. Along with back revisions, this means sales fell in each month through Q4, consistent with weak consumer demand in the last quarter of 2008. Another report showed

 

Euroland producer prices decelerating further from 3.3% yr to 1.8% yr in December.

 

UK construction PMI rises from 29.3 to 34.5 in Jan. The first rise in this index since August. Still very weak but along with other less weak surveys for January, it does hint that the pace of decline in the economy might not still be steepening.

 

Outlook

This correction in the NZD can go higher today, to around 0.5170. Players are waiting for levels to sell, for the next big move which is expected to take the currency into the 0.40’s.

 

Events Today

Country Release Last Forecast

NZ Dec External Migration ann. 3,600 4,000

Jan ANZ Commodity Prices –7.4% –

Aus Dec Retail Trade sa 0.4% 5.0%

Dec Retail Trade, Trend 0.1% 1.0%

Dec Dwelling Approvals –12.8% 5.0%

US Jan Corporate Layoff Announcements

Jan ADP Private Payrolls Change –693k –530k

Jan ISM Non-Manufacturing 40.1 41.0

Eur Jan PMI Services (F) 42.5a 42.5

Dec Retail Sales 0.6% flat

UK Jan Consumer Confidence 47 45

Jan PMI Services 40.2 41.0

Jan BRC Shop Price Index %yr 0.5% –

 

Latest Research Papers/Publications

• NZ Q4 LCI and QES Review (2 February)

• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (2 February)

• RBNZ OCR Review (29 January)

• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (27 January)

These papers/publications are available on Online Research on Westpac

Institutional Bank’s website (www.wib.westpac.co.nz)

 

 

 

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 www.westpac.com.au 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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