The Opening Bell: Where currencies start on Thursday, October 19, 2017

By Dan Bell

The NZDUSD opens at 0.7146 (mid-rate) this morning.

The NZD is down against the majority of its trading rivals with yesterday’s disappointing dairy trade auction weighing heavily on the currency. We expect the NZD to trade sideways ahead of Winston Peter’s announcement on which party he will side with to form a government.

Overnight a sharp fall in US housing starts and building permits saw the USD pull back from its intraday highs. The Commerce Department report showed housing starts plunged 4.7%in September to an annual rate of 1.127m. During the same period building permits plummeted 4.5% to an annual rate of 1.215m with August’s previously reported result also downwardly revised to 1.272m.

The UK unemployment rate remained at 4.3% in the three months to August, its lowest level since 1975 and in line with expectations. Average earnings increased by 2.2% during the same period slightly ahead of the expected 2.1 increase.

Global equity markets have turned positive - Dow +0.67%, S&P 500 +0.14%, FTSE +0.36%, DAX +0.37%, CAC +0.42%, Nikkei +0.13, Shanghai +0.29%.

Gold prices have edged lower, down 0.4% trading at $1,280 an ounce. WTI Crude Oil prices have are up 1.0% overnight currently trading at $52.04 a barrel.

Current indicative rates:

NZDUSD    0.7146     -0.3%
NZDEUR    0.6053     -0.6%
NZDGBP    0.5413     -0.4%
NZDJPY      80.64       0.2%
NZDAUD    0.9107     -0.4%
NZDCAD    0.8909     -0.9%
GBPNZD    1.8474      0.4%


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Dan Bell is the senior currency strategist at HiFX in Auckland. You can contact him here »

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