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Wednesday May 6, 2009 - 22:21:16 GMT
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Forex Research - Morning Report

Morning Report Thursday 7 May 2009


News and views

More bears growing horns. Some US bank stress test headline results managed to reach the media last night (despite the official release being tonight), and they were not as dire as the market expected. Several banks (Goldman, Morgan Stanley, Bank of NY) were said to be sound enough not to require new capital, and those which do, such as Citigroup and Wells Fargo, need much less than expectations had priced in. Yesterday's news that BofA needs $34 billion was perversely followed by a 16% rise in its shares last night. The S&P500 closed up 1.2%, banks having another stellar performance at 9.6%.

EUR failed to follow equities higher, possibly weighed by concerns the ECB may at least start talking about QE at tonight's policy meeting, and Standard & Poor's cutting the ratings on five German landesbanks. A range of 1.3270 to 1.3370 contained action. GBP, on the other hand, found support at 1.50 to launch a move higher to 1.5140.

AUD gained over a cent to 0.7500 and made a new 2009 high as risk buyers targeted this particular currency, both against the USD as well as the EUR. Yesterday's strong retail sales and trade number probably helped.

NZD failed to keep pace with the AUD, gaining half a cent to around 0.5850. Yesterday's March statement of government finances reminded the market of the hole expected in the 28 May budget. AUD/NZD gained from 1.2750 to 1.2850, but has slipped in the past few hours to under 1.2800.

US ADP private payrolls down 491k in Apr. This compares to a revised 708k fall (was 742k) in Mar. Despite a methodology revamp a few months ago, ADP does not yet have a reliable track record as a predictor of surprise monthly payrolls outcomes. So we are not revising our forecast of a 650k April payrolls decline, although risks that we see a smaller fall have increased somewhat. Also on the labour market, corporate layoff announcements were up 47% yr in April.

Euroland April PMI services revised higher. The services PMI was revised up from the flash estimate of 43.1 to 43.8. However March retail sales fell 0.6%, the sixth consecutive month of decline.

UK house prices down 1.7% in April. The HBoS measure was weaker than the Nationwide BS house price index for April, which only fell 0.4%. The annual pace of decline of the HBoS index is now -17.7% yr, from -147.5% yr in Mar. In other news, the PMI services rose from 45.5 to 48.7 in April, another sign that the economy might be contracting at a slower pace heading into Q2.

Stronger than expected Canadian data. The Ivey PMI survey jumped from 43.2 to 53.7 in April, a month when it normally declines. Building permits surged 23.5% in March after five consecutive declines in Oct-Feb. Non-res jumped 48% but residential was up only 5%.


The Q1 unemployment rate reported this morning is expected to be 5.3% (from 4.7%), although a much worse number would be needed to pressure NZD. Global sentiment remains strong, and dominates local fundamentals as far as driving the NZD goes. Today's resistance at 0.5870 is vulnerable, pointing to 0.5900.


Imre Speizer, Senior Market Strategist, NZ, Ph: (04) 470 8266

With contributions from Westpac Economics



Events Today

Country Release Last Forecast

NZ Q1 HLFS Employment 0.9% –1.2%

Q1 HLFS Unemployment 4.7% 5.3%

Aus Apr Employment chg –34.7k –18k

Apr Unemployment Rate 5.7% 5.8%

US Q1 Productivity % ann’lsd –0.4% 0.0%

Q1 Unit Labour Costs % ann’lsd 5.7% 2.8%

Initial Jobless Claims w/e 2/5 631k 640k

Apr Chain Store Sales %yr –2.1% –

Mar Net Consumer Credit $bn –7.5 –4.0

Fedspeak: Bernanke, Evans, Yellen

Eur ECB Repo Rate Decision 1.25% 1.00%

Ger Mar Factory Orders –3.5% –4.0%

UK BoE Rate Decision 0.50% 0.50%


Latest Research Papers/Publications

• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (4 May)

• NZ Economic Overview May 2009 (1 May)

• NZ Q1 labour market preview (30 April)

• RBNZ OCR Review (30 April)

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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