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Monday May 30, 2005 - 21:02:37 GMT
Westpac Institutional Bank - www.westpac.co.nz

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Forex: Westpac Institutional Bank Morning Report

Westpac Institutional Bank Morning Report

New Zealand Dollar: NZD remains range bound, awaits inspiration
The NZD remained well entrenched in its recent range on Monday and desperately awaits either a technical breakout or fundamental inspiration to help it out of the 0.7050 to 0.7170 range it has kept for the past 18 days. Yesterday's NY and London holidays meant for a quiet day in the currency markets; however the French referendum's no vote rejecting the new EU constitution weighed on the NZD which followed the euro lower early NZ time. NZD/USD opened near the intraday high at 0.7149 and drifted lower to 0.7120 after the French 'non' was made public. The NZD remained lethargic for the remainder of Monday but ventured slightly lower late in the day and opens this morning at 0.7115.

Australian Dollar: AUD data boosts GDP expectations
AUD/USD was on the back foot early Monday moving from 0.7627 down to 0.7605, the downward pressure a result of the lower euro. Aust inventory levels rose 2% early in 2005 and will add 1.2ppts to Q1 GDP growth. This number outperformed market expectations and points to a significantly healthier GDP number on Wednesday. The data release added a bid tone to the AUD and reversed the early selloff; AUD rallied back up to 0.7135. Weakness developed late in the day, the AUD opens today on the low at 0.7605.

Major Currencies: Euro posts 7-month low after 'no' vote
The euro fell to a fresh seven-month low against the USD during Monday's offshore session after France rejected the proposed European Union constitution. Recent weak growth data and political problems have weighed on euro sentiment, and although the 'no' vote was widely expected it dampened sentiment further by raising questions about public support behind the EU and future integration. In thin trading due to holidays in the US and Britain the euro slid to a 1.2465 low versus the USD and opens around its overnight lows this morning. Most trading was done via the euro overnight, being reflected in a 10bps USD/JPY range from 107.90 to 108.00.

Japanese industrial production close to expectations.
Japanese IP rose 2.2% in April following on from a 0.2% fall in March. Transport, machinery and electrical goods were solid performers. Shipments rose 2.7% while inventories where flat and as such the sales/inventory ratio fell by 1.2%m/m. This is a solid result and provides a good backdrop for the outlook for the Japanese economy.

Q1 Canadian current account narrows.
Nevertheless, the Q1 surplus of $4.0bn was larger than $3.2bn consensus. However, that surprise was offset by Q4's surplus having $1bn shaved off it to $5.3bn. The strong Canadian dollar against the USD (85% of exports head to the US) is evident in the flows. Goods exports receipts rose 1.2% but were outpaced by a 2.7% increase in the imports bill, shaving just over a $1bn off the goods balance to $13.2bn. The services deficit also widened slightly to $3.2bn. A partial offset come from a smaller investment income deficit of $5.7bn on lower returns paid to foreign investors.

Events Today
Country Release Last Forecast
NZ Apr Dwelling Consents 6.6% -3.0%
Aust Q1 Current Account Balance AUDbn -15.2 -15.8
Q1 Net Exports Cont. ppt -0.6 -0.1
Q1 Government Spending 1.5% 1.0%
Apr Retail Sales 0.1% 0.1%
Apr Credit 0.8% -
US May Chicago PMI 65.6 59.0
May CB Consumer Confidence 97.7 97.5
Eur May Economic Confidence 96.5 95.0
May Business Climate Index -0.28 -0.40
May CPI %yr 2.1% 2.2%
Can Mar GDP 0.3% flat
Q1 GDP 1.7% 2.5%

Latest Research papers/Publication L
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (30 May)
• NZ Weekly Interest Rate Wrap-up (30 May)
• What are markets telling us? (27 May)
• NZD: A change in the rules? (27 May)
• NZD: Finding supply and demand (25 May)
• Diversification - no place like home (24 May)
• Wages - a precursor of inflation? (23 May)
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (23 May)
• NZ Weekly Interest Rate Wrap-up (23 May)
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 24 May 2005. 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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