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Thursday November 16, 2006 - 20:29:27 GMT
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Forex: Westpac Institutional Bank Morning Report

New Zealand Dollar Buyers emerge to push NZD higher overnight
Favourable housing data and continued buying of JPY saw the NZD slightly higher in our time zone yesterday, with some initial selling around 0.6600 noted. It was a different story overnight however, with euro strength and a variety of buyers, including stop-loss buying, combining to push the NZD just above 0.6660 where it eventually met with profit taking. The currency opens this morning about 50-points higher on a trade-weighted basis.

Australian Dollar: AUD higher, again struggles to break 0.7700
It was a very quiet day for the AUD yesterday as the currency traded in a narrow 17-point range, with a slight cautious upward bias prompted by NZD strength. Overnight trading also saw the AUD push higher, with buyers taking it just short of 0.7700 where it again found resistance. A healthy correction sees it down and opening this morning around 0.7665.

Major Currencies: USD remains strong despite easing in consumer spending
The USD eased initially overnight as Oct CPI came in below expectations, causing the euro to spike to a high of 1.2842. The USD however strengthened against most major currencies later in the overnight session even though US data releases were slightly below forecasts. The euro weakened after Eurozone CPI came in as expected and the UK retail sales jumped in Oct. GBP rallied to 1.8935 but failed to kick on as expectations of a further interest rate hike have already been discounted and has eased to today’s open of 1.8874. The yen opens today at 118.25 after the BoJ held interest rates as expected.

Bank of Japan on hold, as widely expected. The consensus is that the Bank will move again in the first quarter of next year. We feel that the Dec meeting is the likely window, given recent official commentary and the data flow between now and then. Quarterly updates on actual and expected capital spending and corporate balance sheets (MoF survey December 4, BoJ Tankan December 15) ahead of the decision on December 19 hold the key.

US core CPI 0.1% in Oct. The big news of the day was the softest core CPI increase since Feb this year: quite a surprise, although it was down to just three components in the CPI basket, the “three As” – airfares, autos, and apparel. Elsewhere, the usual culprits kept
enerating inflationary pressure. The headline CPI fell 0.5% on energy prices.

US Philly Fed survey struggles to 5.1. The factory index posted a lacklustre recovery back into positive territory after two very weak monthly readings, but the detail in the report was not impressive: orders declining for the second month in three, shipments barely improved and jobs growth stalled. The contrast with the booming manufacturing environment in the neighbouring New York Fed district is stark.

US industrial production up 0.2% in Oct. The hard data on October manufacturing was not impressive either. A rebound in utility output as the weather normalised prevented an IP fall, but manufacturing was constrained by weakness in auto production and sluggish even excluding the auto sector. NY district aside, there has clearly been a slowdown in US industry in recent months, something the national ISM has been accurately signalling.

But US NAHB homebuilder sentiment rises from 30 to 33 in Nov. The good news on the economy was the further confirmation that the housing downturn is finding a bottom.

Other US news: Initial jobless claims fell 2k to 308k, continue to point to a healthy labour market. The September TIC data were solid enough at $65.1bn in the context of the very impressive inflow figures for the prior month.

Euroland CPI was confirmed at 1.6% yr in Oct, down from 1.7% yr in Sep. The core rate was unchanged at 1.5% yr in October.

UK retail sales bounced back 0.9% in Oct, after Sep’s surprise fall. The detail showed non-food sales up 1.6%, more than reversing the prior month’s 1.1% fall. Also in Oct, 48% of the RICS surveyors reported rising house prices – the strongest RICS report in four years.

Events Today
Date Country Release Last Forecast
17 Nov US Oct Housing Starts 5.9% –6.0%
Oct Housing Permits –5.2% 2.0%
Eur Sep Trade Balance €bn –5.5 –3.0
20 Nov Aust ECB’s Trichet Sydney press conference
US Oct Leading Indicators 0.1% 0.3%
UK Oct Public Finances £bn 12.3 –5.0
M4 Money Supply %yr 14.5% n/f

Latest Research papers/Publication
• Great expectations (16 November)
• NZ Oct REINZ House Prices (16 November)
• NZ Q3 Retail Sales Review (15 November)
• NZ Interest Rate Strategy Weekly (14 November)
• NZ Weekly Forex Outlook (13 November)
• NZ Q3 HLFS Review (9 November)
• NZ Q3 LCI and QES Review (6 November)
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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GVI Trading. Potential Price Risk Scale
AA: Major, A: High, B: Medium

Tue 31 July 2018
AA JP- Bank of Japan
A 06:00 DE- Retail Sales
A 09:00 EZ- flash HICP/GDP
AA 12:30 US- Core PCE Deflator
A 14:00 US- CB Consumer Confidence
Wed 1 Aug 2018
A Final Mfg PMIs
AA 12:15 US- ADP Private Payrolls
A 15:00 US- EIA Crude
AA 18:00 US- Federal Reserve Decision
Thu 2 Aug 2018
AA 11:00 GB- Bank of England Decision
A 13:30 US- Weekly Jobless
Fri 3 Aug 2018
A Final Services PMIs
AA 12:30 US- Employment
A 12:30 US/CA- Trade

John M. Bland, MBA
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