The Opening Bell: Where currencies start for Tuesday, February 5, 2013

By Dan Bell

The NZD/USD opens lower at 0.8440 this morning.

The EUR/USD fell 1.4% from 14-month highs. Weak Spanish unemployment data and continuingly weak euro-zone investor sentiment weighed on the EUR.

The EUR was further hampered on news that Spain’s prime minister has been accused of corruption, and the evergreen Silvio Berlusconi, Italy’s scandal plagued former prime minister, is gaining ground before the elections later in February.

US Factory orders showed improvement from the previous reading, but was still lower than the market expected.

World equity markets fell across the board. The Dow Jones closed 0.8% lower, while the UK and Euro-zone stock markets plunged between 1.5% & 3.1%.

Gold prices climbed a little to USD$1674. Oil, Copper and other base metals prices dropped on the day.

The NZD opens at 0.8440 USD, 0.8085 AUD, 0.6240 EUR, 0.5350 GBP, & 77.90 JPY.

NZ Labour Cost Index hit the tapes at 10:45am today. It is a big day for Aussie data with their Trade Balance, Housing Price Index, and the all-important Reserve Bank of Australia Cash Rate interest rate decision – there is only a 20% probability of rate cut from the cut level of 3.00%.


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

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