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Wednesday June 1, 2005 - 22:26:26 GMT
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Forex: Westpac Institutional Bank Morning Report

Westpac Institutional Bank Morning Report

New Zealand Dollar: Technical break sees NZD trade 4 month low
NZD/USD confirmed the break out of its recent three week range on Wednesday. The NZD broke through several key support levels after valiantly holding on earlier in the day and traded down to 0.6968, a four month low. A weaker euro and AUD weighed on the NZD along with a recent string of soft economic data. The currency traded between 0.7040 and 0.7060 for the majority of NZ time, hanging onto key support around 0.7040/50. The weight of sellers finally took its toll on the NZD and when the support level broke it was immediately trading near the low at 0.6968. There was a brief rally to 0.7020, however this was short lived and the currency soon reverted to its lows. The NZD opens today at 0.6970, still under pressure.

Australian Dollar: AUD trades a new low for 2005
The AUD continued to show weakness yesterday with USD bulls, weak local data and a technical break the contributing factors. The Aust economy expanded in Q1, but slightly slower than expected: Q1 GDP rose by 0.7% against an expected 0.8% increase. This follows consistently weaker than expected data and combined with a stronger
USD and a break of technical support around 0.7550, the AUD was punished on Wednesday. The currency held above 0.7550 during subdued local trading but the offshore heavyweights took it down to 0.7475, a level not seen since Dec 2004.

Major Currencies: Euro falls through 1.2300 ahead of Netherlands vote
The euro's woes continued yesterday sinking to an 8-month low against the USD amid concerns of possible failure of the European Monetary Union. After holding above 1.2300 in local trading, the euro broke 1.2300 in the offshore session under heavy selling pressure following a statement from the German central bank in reaction to a report on the possible failure of the EMU. The report, coupled with an overwhelming Dutch rejection of the EU constitution sent the euro spiralling to a 1.2210 low. With dollar positive sentiment prevailing the market overlooked softer than expected US manufacturing data for May. The USD/JPY rallied to 108.84 testing early April's highs, and opens this morning near its highs at around 108.80.

US ISM falls 1.9 pts to 51.4 in May on top of an identical April decline. Production, orders, employment all posted similar falls, the last actually turning negative (i.e. sub 50). At this pace, the ISM headline could be in negative territory next month!

US construction/housing update. Sharp upward revision to Feb construction spending and decent gains since then confirm a robust sector. Strength is apparent in both residential and non-residential activity, though the public spending trend is sluggish. This report is a timely reminder that the slowing industrial sector is not necessarily representative of the broader US economy. Also, pending home sales jumped 3.6% in April, which is another indicator of buoyancy in the established home market.

Fedspeak: Richard Fisher, the new Dallas Fed president who votes on the FOMC this year, said "we are not quite there yet" regarding the Fed's interest rate peak, but "we are in the eight inning" of the cycle.

Euroland PMI falls from 49.2 to 48.7 in May. The European business survey news just keeps on deteriorating. The national breakdown showed weakness in all major member economies, although Italy stood out with a very weak 47.6 reading.

UK PMI falls from 49.1 to 47.3. The UK industrial sector is also distressed, with the contracting PMI suggesting little prospect of a bounce in the official industrial production data, which has not posted a rise at all this year yet. But mortgage lending data for April were stronger.

Events Today
Country Release Last Forecast
Aus Apr Trade Balance AUDbn -2.7 -2.2
Apr Dwelling Approvals -6.8% 3.0%
US Initial Jobless Claims w/e 28/5 323 325
Q1 Productivity Revision 2.6%a 3.0%
Apr Factory Orders 0.1% 1.4%
Fedspeak: Stern
Eur Apr Producer Prices %yr 4.2% n/f
ECB Repo Rate Announcement 2.0% 2.0%
UK May Nationwide House Prices 0.9% -0.3%

Latest Research papers/Publication
NZD 0.7036 - 0.7064 0.6968 - 0.7052 _0.6961 0.6940-0.6990
AUD 0.7547 - 0.7575 0.7475 - 0.7560 _0.7481 _(0.9306) 0.7460-0.7510
JPY 108.14 - 108.49 108.16 - 108.84 _108.66 _(75.630) 108.60-109.00
EUR 1.2298 - 1.2333 1.2210 - 1.2335 _1.2214 _(0.5699) 1.2160-1.2210
GBP 1.8165 - 1.8225 1.8093 - 1.8205 _1.8104 _(0.3845) 1.8060-1.8100
• Warning shot for the RBNZ (31 May)
• 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)
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 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 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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