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Tuesday August 23, 2005 - 21:48:52 GMT
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Forex: Westpac Institutional Bank Morning Report

New Zealand Dollar: NZD range-trades in flat market
Tuesday proved to be an uninteresting day for the currency markets with the antipodean currencies stuck in tight ranges. The NZD was contained to a 25bps range during the local session, trading between 0.6955 and 0.6980 despite higher than expected inflation data. Q2 PPI input prices in particular were stronger at 2.0% qtr and 3.0% yr; output prices were in line with market expectations at 1.2% qtr and 3.0% yr. Support was evident at 0.6955 again during offshore trading and the high was printed at 0.6988. The NZD opens today at 0.6980.

Australian Dollar: AUD on a tight leash around 0.7550
The AUD fared no better than its trans-Tasman neighbour yesterday and ventured no further than 20bps either side of 0.7550. There is little Australian economic data this week and with much of the Northern hemisphere still on vacation the FX market has been restrained, with traders struggling to eke out any profit. The AUD was supported at 0.7539 and couldn't push higher than 0.7570 on Tuesday; it retreated back to 0.7550 at the close.

Major Currencies: USD rangebound in quiet trade
The USD traded tight ranges against major currencies on Tuesday as an absence of major economic data ensured rangebound trading. The USD was slightly stronger against the yen as traders took profits on the yen's recent rally from hefty foreign inflows into Japanese stocks. USD/JPY traded a 110.15 high overnight, up from 109.59 in the domestic session and opens this morning around 109.85. German investor confidence released was surprisingly strong, helping the euro test 1.2250-60 resistance. Overnight the euro traded a 60bps range with a high of 1.2255, the euro opens this morning around 1.2230.

Japanese tertiary activity rose 1.0% in June. This outcome reverse two thirds of the May decline, and pushes the annual rate up to 2.1% from 1.5%. For the quarter, Q2 was unchanged from Q1. That is consistent with the less rapid pace of GDP and PCE growth in the June quarter.

US existing home sales fall 2.6% in July, a little steeper than our 2% forecast decline, although June's record sales pace was revised a little higher, from 7.33mn (annualised) to 7.35mn. The report also showed that the median house price accelerated to 14.1% yr in July. Because of some slight downward revisions to earlier data, that is marginally lower than April's 14.2% yr record high. So no new records this month, but still very strong data overall. It remains to be seen whether recent rises in mortgage rates prevent fresh records from being achieved later this year.

The Richmond Fed manufacturing index showed some belated catch-up to the strength shown in the other regional Fed indices in recent months, rising from -3 to 3 in August. However the services and retail indices from the fifth Fed district reversed their sharp July gains, though both remained comfortably positive in August.

Lacklustre US weekly retail sales data: chain store sales fell 0.3% in the w/e 20/8, the third weekly loss in a row. The Redbook retail average was down 0.9%, unchanged from the prior week. Hot weather (which continues this week) and postponement of back to school purchases were cited as factors constraining sales, rather than higher gasoline prices.

The Canadian leading index rose by an as expected 0.3% in July, the same growth rate it saw in May and June. That steady, positive growth rate reflects a favourable flow of activity data which has gradually built up a fairly strong case for the BoC to resume retightening monetary policy. We expect 25bps at the September 9 window.

German ZEW survey up from 37 to 50 in Aug. A ZEW spokesman suggested that optimism about global economic strength was also important, more than offsetting concerns about the recent appreciation of the euro (i.e. since early July) and record high oil prices. Also, German GDP growth was confirmed as flat in Q2.

Events Today
Country Release Last Forecast
Aust Q2 Construction Work Done 1.9% flat
Q2 Enterprise Bargaining %ann 4.3% n/f
US Jul Durable Goods Orders 2.8% -2.0%
Jul New Home Sales 4.0% -5.0%
Fedspeak: Moskow
Eur Jun Industrial Orders -1.5% 1.5%
Ger Aug Cost of Living % yr 2.0% 2.2%
UK Aug CBI Industrial Trends Survey 6 n/f

Latest Research papers/Publication
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (22 August)
• NZ Weekly Interest Rate Wrap-up (22 August)
• Pre-election Economic and Fiscal Update (18 August)
• NZ Weekly Interest Rate Wrap-up (16 August)
• NZD: A Commodity Story (15 August)
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (15 August)
• NZ Q2 Retail Sales Review (12 August)
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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AA: Major, A: High, B: Medium

Mon 10 Sep 2018
AA 08:30 GB- GDP, Trade, Output
Tue 11 Sep 2018
AA 08:30 GB- Employment Decision
A 09:00 DE- ZEW Survey
Wed 12 Sep 2018
A 12:30 US- PPI
A 14:30 US- EIA Crude
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A 1:30 AU- Employment
AA 11:00 GB- Bank of England Decision
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AA 12:30 US- CPI
Fri 14 Sep 2018
A 08:30 GB- GDP
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A 13:15 US- Industrial Production
AA 14:00 US- prelim University of Michigan

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