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Thursday March 23, 2006 - 01:42:42 GMT
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Forex: Westpac Institutional Bank Morning Report

New Zealand Dollar NZD collapses through 0.6200, recovers overnight
The NZD tumbled to below 0.6200 yesterday, trading down to 0.6178 as options barriers were taken out, and stop-loss orders filled. Technical indicators pointed to the NZD being oversold, and buying was seen last night against the USD and on crosses, with the NZD trading to a high of 0.6286 overnight. We open this morning around 0.6270, and await Q4 Current Account at 10:45am.

Australian Dollar: AUD trades in narrow range
The AUD traded in a narrow range during our session yesterday. Minor data released yesterday showed motor vehicle sales falling in February, and the Westpac Melbourne Institute Leading Index of Economic Activity pointed to growth being at long term trend levels. Overnight buying saw the AUD trade to just above 0.7200 and we open this morning around this level.

Major Currencies: Majors range-bound in light trading
Major currencies were somewhat quieter than recent sessions on Wednesday as the market took a breather due to a relatively light economic data release schedule. The euro looked good early by getting back up through 1.2100, but gave back those gains to open just above support at 1.2070. GBP was largely confined to a 1.7455 – 1.7495 range, unable to break convincingly through 1.7500. JPY was capped around 117.40 and it opens this morning around 116.90. Expecting a quiet end to the week, traders are already looking toward next week’s US Fed meeting.

No key US data. Though the weekly mortgage application data out have now registered fall in six of the 8 weeks to March 17 since peaking in late January. House sales themselves for February are out at the end of the week, with the mortgage applications indicating any show of strength is likely to be short-lived.

Euroland industrial orders down. January orders dropped with a thump by 5.9% against expectations of a fairly flat result. However, December’s increase was revised up 2.8ppts. Moreover, the European data are seeing the same pattern present on US orders: both Airbus and Boeing enjoyed strong aircraft orders late in 2005. In January French orders dropped 15% after increasing 32% over the last 2 months of the year.

Euroland Jan trade balance recorded a seasonally-adjusted deficit of €2.5bn, £0.1bn smaller than December’s.

BoE vote 8:1 again. The minutes for this month’s MPC meeting showed Steven Nickell remaining the lone voice for lower interest rates for the past four meetings. His term on the MPC is almost up, leaving him two more shots at convincing a majority to cut rates. Our view is there will be enough positive data to make Nickel’s efforts in coming months go unrewarded, though we do expect the BoE to eventually cut rates later in the year. David Blanchflower, an economics professor at Dartmouth College, will fill the vacant MPC slot.

UK Budget. Of interest was that the Government will weight the mix of bond issuance more to long-dated bonds over the next financial year: two-thirds of issuance will be at the long end, up from\ half currently. Future total borrowing requirements changed little, however, after speculation that Gordon Brown would be forced to borrow more. The growth outlook was unchanged from the December pre-Budget report, but remains on the optimistic side of other forecasters, including ourselves.

Events Today
Country Release Last Forecast
23 Mar NZ Q4 Current Account NZDmn –5,071 –4,473
US Initial Jobless Claims w/e 18/3 309k 302k
Feb Existing Home Sales –2.8% 0.6%
Jpn Feb Trade Balance ¥bn 572 620
Eur Jan Current Acct Bal EURbn s.a. –5.3 n/f
24 Mar NZ Q4 GDP %qtr 0.2% 0.2%
US Feb Durable Goods Orders –9.9% –1.0%
Feb New Home Sales –5.0% –2.5%
Jpn Jan Tertiary Activity Index 0.2% n/f
Ger CPI %yr 2.1% 2.0%

Latest Research papers/Publication
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (20 March)
• NZ Q4 Current Account Preview (17 March)
• NZ Q4 GDP Preview (16 March)
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (13 March)
• NZ RBNZ March MPS Review (9 March)
• NZ Q4 Terms of Trade Review (9 March)
• A dysfunctional tool? (7 March)
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (6 March)
• NZ RBNZ March MPS Preview (2 March)
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (27 February)
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
A 18:00 US- Beige Book
Thu 13 Sep 2018
A 1:30 AU- Employment
AA 11:00 GB- Bank of England Decision
AA 11:45 EZ- European Central Bank Decision
A 12:30 US- Weekly Jobless
AA 12:30 US- CPI
Fri 14 Sep 2018
A 08:30 GB- GDP
AA 12:30 US- Retail Sales
A 13:15 US- Industrial Production
AA 14:00 US- prelim University of Michigan

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