Tuesday December 20, 2005 - 21:29:25 GMT
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Westpac Institutional Bank - www.westpac.co.nz
Forex: Westpac Institutional Bank Morning ReportNew Zealand Dollar NZD positioning ahead of key data
The NZD opened yesterday on its highs before drifting lower throughout the day trading in a 0.6852-0.6902 range with sellers overwhelming the session ahead of key economic data today and tomorrow. Overnight the NZD tried to stage a comeback reaching a session high of 0.6898 before renewed selling interest took over. The Q4 consumer confidence survey contributed to the NZD’s slide after tumbling to a 5 year low of 110.1 from 120.2 in Q3. The NZD opens this morning around 0.6820, up from the overnight low of 0.6807.
Australian Dollar: AUD vulnerable
The AUD fell to a 3-week low of 0.7383 yesterday as large unwinding of carry trades continued. The offered tone continued overnight with the AUD breaking through the key 0.7350 level to post a session low of 0.7320 before finding support. This morning it opens around 0.7327.
Major Currencies: Euro sold on triggered stop loss orders
The USD bounced back against the euro in Tuesday’s offshore session after surprisingly strong US housing data for Nov. Despite a fall in the US producer price index, the stronger than expected housing starts and permits data confirmed that the US economy was fairly robust and reinforced expectations of further Federal Reserve rate hikes. The euro fell swiftly from above 1.2000 following the US data with stop loss sell orders pushing the euro down to a 1.1841 one-week low. The euro opens this morning at around 1.1860. The USD/JPY continued its recovery trading back through 117.00 to a 117.30 high and opens this morning at around 117.20.
US producer prices fall 0.8% in Nov.
The producer price index was dragged lower by a 10.7% fall in gasoline prices, although residential gas prices, which jumped nearly 13% in the Oct PPI, only edged down slightly. The core PPI was constrained by a further decline in auto and capital equipment prices. Overall a subdued Nov report, with continued evidence of higher price pressure at the core and intermediate stages of production having little impact on factory gate prices.
US housing starts and permits bounce in Nov.
The housing data were much stronger than the market was expecting but in line with Westpac's 5% and 3% forecast gains for starts and permits, respectively. Reports of the imminent demise of the US housing boom have been somewhat premature, although we still flag that as a serious risk for the US economy sometime later in 2006. Meanwhile, housing looks set to make a solid contribution to Q4 GDP growth.
Canadian CPI up 2.0% headline, 1.6% core, in Nov.
No real surprises here, with the headline rate pulled yet lower by falling gasoline prices, and the core rate – still below the 1-3% target midpoint – edging down due to favourable base effects. No fresh implications for Bank of Canada monetary policy.
Euroland trade was balanced in Oct
before seasonal adjustment (i.e. €0.0bn), but a deficit of €1.2bn s.a. Although exports have strengthened, the rising price of oil has contributed to the monthly trade balance slipping from a surplus of €8bn in mid 2004 to a small deficit now.
UK housing market looking up.
November saw the first positive reading (4%) on the RICS house price survey since mid 2004. Building society and bank home lending data for November were solid too.
Country Release Last Forecast
NZ Q3 Balance of Payments qtr NZDbn -2.85 -4.56
Aust Nov New Motor Vehicle Sales -6.7% 1.5%
Oct Westpac-MI Leading Index 4.0% n/f
Dec DEWR Skilled Vacancies Trend 0.2% n/f
US Q3 GDP (F) % ann’lsd 4.3%a 4.3%
Jpn Bank of Japan Minutes, Nov Meeting
UK Bank of England Minutes, Dec Meeting
Dec CBI Distributive Trades Survey
Can Oct Retail Sales/ ex auto -0.9%1.7% 0.5%/-0.7%
Latest Research papers/Publication
• NZ Q4 Consumer Confidence (21 December)
• NZ 2005/06 HYEFU/BPS Review (19 December)
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (19 December)
• NZ Q3 GDP Preview (16 December)
• NZ Nov REINZ Housing Review (16 December)
• NZ HYEFU/BPS Preview (16 December)
• NZ Q3 Current Account Preview (14 December)
• NZ Agribiz December 2005 (13 December)
• NZ Weekly Interest Rate Wrap-up (13 December)
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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