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Weekly FX Update - 28th Feb 2011

Written by Sam Coxhead on February 28th, 2011.      0 comments

Currency Commentaries:

Click to access our currency pair reports:  
NZD/USD                                      AUD/USD                                    GBP/USD
NZD/AUD (AUD/NZD)                    AUD/GBP (GBPAUD)                    GBP/EUR (EUR/GBP)
NZD/GBP (GBP/NZD)                    AUD/EUR (EUR/AUD)                   GBP/RAND

Major Announcements last week:

· European economic data positive on balance, headed by good rise in Business Confidence
· US Consumer Confidence rises sharply
· US Existing Homes Sales rise more than expected but “distressed sales” rise to 37% of  total number  
· US Weekly Unemployment Claims drop below 400k and GDP growth revised down to 2.8% from 3.2%
· Bank of England minutes show Monetary Policy Committee split edges further towards a hike in the cash rate, but disappoints market
· UK GDP revised down from -.5% to -.6% attributable to lower Govt spending
· Canadian Retail Sales -.2% against an expected 0.0% number
·  South African GDP increases 4.4% against an expectation of 4.2% for the quarter

Market Overview:  

The last week proved to be anything but dull in the financial markets . Risk aversion was rife for the first half of the week. This saw commodity and stock markets move lower in unison and the relative “safe haven” currencies of the Swiss Franc and the Japanese YEN in high demand. The double whammy of continued geo-political concerns in North Africa and the Middle East coupled with a renewed focus on European Government debt levels set the tone. Oil maintained its upward trend into the end of the week until Saudi Arabia stated its commitment to increase supply to replace the disrupted Libyan flow. Extended periods of $100 per barrel oil pricing with have a strongly negative impact on global growth. With Oil off its highs towards the end of the week, the stock markets showed some signs of a recovering sentiment. Risk aversion based on an increase in the price of oil will typically mean the US dollar does not see the buying interest that it would does when worries are based on structural financial concerns.
Adding to the mix was the continued devastating run of natural disasters for Australasia in the form of the Christchurch earthquake. The economic impacts of this latest quake have yet to be fully assessed and remain of secondary concern as the search for the missing continues. Early, and very approximate estimates are putting the price of destruction around 12 billion NZD, or approximately 8-9% of GDP. Obviously this has seen the NZD under considerable pressure, although a short term base seems to have formed down around the .7420 level. Speculation about Insurance based NZD purchases seem to have stemmed the downside bias for the time being, but liquidity remains light on most cross rates. The interest rate markets has now fully priced a 25pt cut to the cash rate from the RBNZ, so expect any bounces in the NZD to be limited at best.
 In the coming week the Australian economy has some big data due for release. Tuesday sees Retail Sales for January released, followed by the RBA cash rate release and statement. Expect the cash rate to remain at 4.75%, but the RBA insights on economy to be of interest. Wednesday sees GDP data, with the market expecting .6% growth for the quarter. Thursday, the monthly Building Approvals numbers and the Trade Balance. If the data is released close to expectations, expect the recent range with the USD to continue for the AUD. The outperformance of the NZD by the Australian dollar may well continue in the short term, but current levels still represent very good buying of NZD with AUD from a historical perspective.
In Europe concerns are once again emerging about peripheral member state funding. Closely watched this week will be a host of Govt debt auctions. These auctions are key as they effect sentiment on all debt on issue in the Eurozone, and therefore have far reaching implications. Of note last week were moves in Portuguese debt. The pricing for five and ten year Portuguese debt hit levels at which Greece and Ireland were forced to seek bailout funding from the IMF/EU. Meanwhile in Ireland, negotiations are underway to form a new Government. Any move away from the commitment to the austerity measures assumed by the previous out going party could prove negative for the EURO.
In the UK the tough debate on the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) at the Bank of England (BoE) is heating up. Last week’s minutes showed that the bias is moving towards an increase in the cash rate at some stage, but not as soon as the “speculative” market had priced in. This coupled with the weaker GDP figure released on Friday stalled the Pound Sterling’s appreciation for the time being. The BoE have a very tough job to manage the economy. Government spending cuts are just rolling out, inflationary pressure is very high and looks entrenched for the medium term. Any hike in the cash rate would potentially see a higher GBP, which in turns will put pressure on exporter profit margins and therefore further lengthens the recovery period for the wider economy.
The South African data is starting to show signs of turning with GDP beating expectations by .2% at 4.4%. Growth looks to be broad-based which is a pleasing sign. Not so pleasing is the increasing non-productive inflationary pressures that comes with climbing oil prices, especially with regards to mining production and agricultural harvest. The coming week is light on data in South Africa, so expect the lead to come from commodity markets for the Rand. 

RBNZ may leave rates on hold in 2011

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 25th, 2011.      0 comments

3:00 PM (NZT) 25 Feb: Given the economic shock of the Christchurch earthquake this week, market talk has been that the RBNZ may now leave interest rates on hold in 2011. Prior to the quake, the market had been looking for a 75 basis point rise in interest rates (+.75%) this year. A Reuters poll of analysts since the quake, predicts rates will remain on hold. The New Zealand dollar has already depreciated significantly since the quake. If the RBNZ does keep rates on hold, this will have a negative influence on the value of the New Zealand dollar.

BoE MPC Minutes Released - GBP supportive

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 23rd, 2011.      0 comments

10:35 PM (NZT) 23 Feb: Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) minutes published this evening stated the committee voted six to three to hold UK interest rates steady. However the majority of members agreed medium-term inflation risks had risen, and the case for withdrawing stimulus had strengthened. GBP spiked higher on the release of the minutes, as these comments are GBP supportive.
The market has become increasingly “hawkish” in recent weeks, with regards to the trajectory of UK interest rates, due to recent higher than expected inflation indicators. The MPC sets the UK official interest rates. The minutes of MPC meetings therefore provide further insight into the committee’s thought process, and give an indication as to the chances of future rate movements. Today’s minutes appear to confirm the market view, that the MPC will raise interest rates in the UK sooner, than had previously been anticipated some weeks ago.
Current interbank market rates:
NZDGBP               .4595
AUDGBP               .6172
GBPEUR                1.1852
GBPUSD               1.6235

Fonterra payout beats expectation

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 22nd, 2011.      0 comments

3:29 PM (NZT) 21 Feb: Fonterra, New Zealand's largest company, announced it is increasing its forecast payout for the current season by 60 cents per kilogram of milk solids. The new payout level is $7.90 to $8.00. The market had expected an increase of  30-50 cents. NZD response was muted.



Earthquake in NZ - NZD well lower

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 22nd, 2011.      0 comments

2:12 PM (NZT) 21 Feb: A second huge quake has hit Christchurch.
NZDUSD has fallen 1 USD cent, AUDNZD up over 1 cent.

Current rates:
NZDUSD    .7562
AUDNZD    1.3320
NZDAUD    .7507

Weekly FX Update - 21st Feb 2011

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 21st, 2011.      0 comments

Currency Commentaries:

Click to access our currency pair reports:  
NZD/USD                                      AUD/USD                                    GBP/USD
NZD/AUD (AUD/NZD)                    AUD/GBP (GBPAUD)                    GBP/EUR (EUR/GBP)
NZD/GBP (GBP/NZD)                    AUD/EUR (EUR/AUD)                   GBP/RAND

Major Announcements last week:

·         NZ Retail Sales month on month -1.1%, slightly worse than market expectation of -0.3%
·         Australian RBA Monetary Policy Meeting minutes released, no clear signals
·         UK CPI year on year comparison 4% as expected
·         German Preliminary GDP qtr on qtr comparison softer than expectations, .4% vrs .5%
·         US core retail sales month on month comparison below expectation at .3% vs. .6%.
·         Bank of Japan upgrades view of economy, but JPYUSD weakens
·         US Core CPI monthly data slightly higher than expectation, overall low core inflation
·         Key US manufacturing indicator at seven year high
·         China raises bank-reserve requirements for the eighth time in 12 months
·         South African January yr on yr CPI up 3.7%

Market Overview:

Last week’s currency markets we conducted against the backdrop of escalating unrest in the Middle east. However markets traded almost unaffected. Whilst there was some flight to “safe haven assets”, we did not see the sharp selling of “risk currencies”, such as the AUD and NZD, that is often associated with these sorts of events.  
Both the AUDUSD and NZDUSD traded lower initially, before closing the week strongly. Domestically weak NZ retail sales data was the catalyst first up. Across the ditch credit ratings agency Moody's announcement that they maydowngrade the credit rating of Australia’s four biggest banks, sent both currencies lower. AUDUSD however recovered strongly and finishing the week almost 2% higher than immediately post announcement. NZDUSD clawed back ground towards the end of the week, largely off the back of the AUDUSD move. Both were also buoyed by higher global commodity prices on Friday.  
The standout currency pair of the week however was the AUD versus NZD. Again we seen the AUD pushing back to historical highs, in relentless fashion. Whist commentators are again suggesting AUDNZD goes to 1.3500, solid resistance remains at 1.3333 (key NZDAUD support of .7500). Therefore current levels again present exceptional levels to sell AUD buy NZD.
Both currencies were again weaker at times against the GBP, as UK inflationary pressures continue to point to higher UK interest rates, and therefore a stronger GBP, at some point this year. However GBP gains were not sustained, with tests of key support levels failing to eventuate, as BoE comments mid week didn’t back up the current market view of an earlier rise. For those patiently waiting to sell GBP buy AUD and NZD, whilst signs of a strengthening GBP are evident, a stronger GBP is far from a certainly in the short term. On the contrary, possibly the short term risk is actually now to a weaker GBP, as the market is now looking for continued evidence of UK inflationary pressures, and for comments for the BOE that point to an earlier rate rise. There is the potential for the market to be disappointed in this situation, if such evidence is forthcoming, but not as strong as the market is expecting.

The key event this week is the release of UK BoE  Monetary Policy Committee most recent meeting minutes. These will point to how the committee voted in terms of their most recent interest rate decision. If the makeup of that vote has (numbers for and against) has changed, GBP will react and quickly. These will be released Tuesday morning UK time.

EURO zone is a region that continues to exude uncertainty. The European Central Bank went on the offensive to reassure the market their stance on inflation is not weakening, saying they will act (i.e. raise interest rates), if medium inflationary pressures warrant. Of note also was Portuguese 5-year bond yields hit a EURO era high, as the market reacted to concerns Portugal may need to seek financial assistance soon. With so many issues still up in the air, it is hard to justify EURO levels higher than at present.  More likely is further bad news will come at some point, leading to tests again of lower EURO levels.

In the US core retail sales data came in below, and core CPI above, market expectation. Key manufacturing indicator the “Philly Fed Manufacturing Index”, came in at a seven year high, pointing to an upbeat manufacturing sector. Overall, US indicators again last week remained upbeat. Key data in the US this week is  the US on Friday consumer confidence data mid week and end of week Preliminary GDP data for the quarter.

In China last week the bank-reserve requirements were raised again, for the eighth time in twelve months. This is a continuation of their efforts to fight inflations. As previously discussed, a scenario of Chinese inflation not being able to be brought under control, represents possibly the single biggest threat to the fortunes of the AUD this year.

Last week also saw the anticipated upgrade by the Bank Of Japan (BoJ), of the their state of the Japanese economy view. However the result was JPY weakened on most crosses. Market commentators suggest this is a sign the market holds the opposite view. Not a great look for the BoJ.

Over the weekend the G20(see definition) met, again with mixed results. No binding agreements were reached, no directional impact on currency markets resulted. However there is a growing agreement in terms of financial sector reforms required. The goal, amongst other things, of the G20 is for low currency volatility, as no economy benefits from extreme swings in its or the exchange rates of its trading partners.

Both AUD and NZD weakened against the South African RAND last week, as the RAND strengthen against the USD, as a rise in CPI  inflation has arguably increased the chances of higher interest rates before the end of the year. South Africa have a big week ahead, with Q4 GDP released tomorrow, and delivery of the Budget speech on Wednesday.

Time to sell AUD buy NZD?

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 18th, 2011.      0 comments

4:20 PM (NZT) 18 Feb: AUDNZD continues its current run of strength in February, with the last five trading days seeing it post almost consistent daily gains. Main driver is NZDUSD has weakened over this period, relative to the AUDUSD. AUD has put in a strong performance in the last two days, bouncing back well having been sold down to .9960, when ratings agency Moody’s announced they were reviewing Australian bank credit ratings earlier in the week.

We are currently trading AUDNZD in the interbank market at 1.3330, AUDUSD at 1.0115 and NZDUSD just below 76 US cents. Whilst NZDUSD is experiencing a current period of weakness, key support remains at .7500.

The ten years high for AUDNZD has been 1.3512. Many market commentators are now once again talking AUDNZD to 1.3500. Possibly this may happen, however nothing is for certain. What is for certain is AUDNZD is again trading at historically high levels. Therefore it is again arguably a great time to sell AUD buy NZD, if you have a natural interest to do so.

US Data Remains Positive

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 18th, 2011.      0 comments

4:45 PM (NZT) 18 Feb: US Core CPI monthly data released last night, while slightly higher than expectation, pointed to overall low core inflation.  Key manufacturing indicator the Philly Fed Manufacturing Index came in at a seven year high, pointing to an upbeat manufacturing sector. Overall, US indicators have again this week remain surprisingly upbeat.

Of note overnight also, Portuguese 5-year bond yields hit a Euro-era high, as the market reacted to concerns Portugal may need to seek financial assistance soon.

Moody's May Downgrade Australian BK Ratings

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 17th, 2011.      0 comments

8:11 AM (AEST) 17 Feb. Credit ratings agency Moody's yesterday said they may downgrade the credit rating of Australia’s four biggest banks and their New Zealand unit, on concern that access to overseas markets for funding will be “significantly restrained.”

Whilst both the AUD and NZD were sold aggressively on the announcement, they quickly recovered to pre announcement levels, and are currently both trading close to the 24 hour highs. 

Current interbank levels:
NZDUSD   .7553
NZDGBP   .4692
NZDAUD   .7533
AUDNZD 1.3274
AUDUSD 1.0033

Released: UK CPI, German GBP, US Retail Sales

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 16th, 2011.      0 comments

3:30 PM (NZT) 16 Feb. Released overnight: UK CPI, German GDP, US Retail Sales.
UK CPI year on year is running at 4%, as per market expectation. The Bank of England (BoE) open “Inflation Letter” to the  UK Chancellor, also released overnight, contained comments that again point to the possibility the BoE may raise their official interest rate sooner than expected a month or so ago. Some analysts are now picking as soon as May. Continued speculation of an interest rate hike, continues to be supportive for the GBP. In Euro zone German Preliminary GDP quarter on quarter comparison came in softer than expectations, at .4% vs. .5%. In the US core retail sales month on month comparison came in below expectation at .3% vs. .6%. The poor retail sales number has partly been blamed on bad weather in the US.
So what has been the impact of these numbers?
EURO USD remains virtually unchanged from Fridays close. Current level 1.3533
GBP USD has had another topside push, up now approximately 1% in the last 24 hours. Current level 1.6157

RBA Monetary Policy Meeting Minutes released

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 15th, 2011.      0 comments

2:45 PM AM (AEST) 15 Feb. RBA Minutes of the Monetary Policy Meeting of the board were released this morning. They are a detailed record of the boards most recent meeting, providing in-depth insights into the economic conditions that influenced their decision on where to set interest rates. They are a good read for anyone wanting to take the time to get their in-depth thoughts. In a nut shell today's minutes held a mixed bag. Probably the main line of note was this: "The continuation of subdued growth in consumer spending and the lower-than-expected inflation outcomes provided additional time for the Board to assess at future meetings the evolving balance of risks to both output and inflation."
Given the comments, there is no real additional indicator provided as to whether they are currently pausing in rate tightening, or if they are possibly at the end of the tightening cycle. AUD reaction to the minutes was muted.

To read a copy of the full minutes, please click here.

Weekly FX Update - 14th Feb 2011

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 14th, 2011.      0 comments

Currency Commentaries:

Click to access our currency pair reports:  
NZD/USD                                      AUD/USD                                    GBP/USD
NZD/AUD (AUD/NZD)                    AUD/GBP (GBPAUD)                    GBP/EUR (EUR/GBP)
NZD/GBP (GBP/NZD)                    AUD/EUR (EUR/AUD)                   GBP/RAND

Major Announcements last week:

·         Australian Retail Sales .2% vs .4% expected
·         Canadian Building Permits 2.4% vs 2.9% expected
·         Australian Unemployment rate 5.0% , as expected
·         UK Manufacturing Production -.1% vs +.5% expected
·         UK cash rate unchanged, and no further Q.E , as expected
·         US Weekly Jobless Claims fall by 38k to 383k, lowest since the Lehman Brothers collapse
·         China raises core interest rate by 25pts for the 3rd time to curb inflation
·         NZ January Retail Sales -1.1% vs -0.3% expected (released today)

Market Overview:

Last week currency markets lacked strong direction, as USD fortunes were mixed. This saw most currencies well contained within recent ranges. The USD was under pressure for most of the week, as the EURO and GBP found reasonable support, with noted central bank demand. YEN was also in demand, as stories circulated of large unwinding of “out of the money importer hedge positions”. This unwinding explained the lack of appreciation in the USD/YEN rate, that is normally seen as interest rates (bond yields) rise in the US. End of the week news of Egypt’s Mubarak steeping down, saw “risk assets” (those currencies that do well when things look positive e.g. NZD and AUD) rally, the Dow and S&P 500 finish on levels last seen in mid-2008, and oil drop to a ten-week low.

Longer dated interest rates have moved higher in the US braking through high levels seen mid December. The driver for the rise is the stronger economic outlook in the US. US data remains mostly upbeat across the board. Of note however, was the fact US Fed Chair did not alter his comments of wanting to see sustained job creation before accepting the recovery was truly established. But with the Unemployment rate having dropped and sentiment surveys pointing towards a rosier outlook, the chances of further US Quantitative Easing programs (basically the printing on money aimed at jump starting economic growth), are probably now close to zero. Market realisation of this, and associated higher US interest rates, saw the USD regain lost ground in a reasonably quick manner towards the end of the week. Another positive factor was the sharp decline in Weekly jobless claims numbers -38k to 383k and the lowest number since before the Lehman Brothers collapse.
In the UK the Bank of England (BoE) left the cash rate unchanged, which was widely expected. However GBP did strengthen and Friday nights producer price index rose much more sharply than expected in January. Therefore speculation is now that the BoE will be forced to raise interest rates before the year end. The Monetary Policy Committee meeting minutes in a couple of weeks will be widely watched to see if the number of votes for a raise in the cash rate has increased. The week ahead sees UK CPI on Tuesday and another inflation report on Wednesday. With large inflationary pressure evident, any large increase will add further pressure for the BoE to lift rate. Retail Sales on Friday will also be watched closely for a gauge of how consumer sentiment is developing. Some commentators are picking the GBP to be the best performing currency strength wise in 2011. These building inflationary pressures are perhaps beginning to confirm their view, at least initially.
In Europe the talk was around the fact that German Bundesbank head Alex Weber would not be standing for the soon to be vacant position of head of the European Central Bank (ECB). Many commentators have long held the view Weber was the logical choice to take over from Trichet when his tenure ends shortly. The fact Weber is known for being extremely tough on inflation, had given markets confidence the cash rate would soon be higher, if inflationary pressure remained. Without Weber in the race for the top job, some of the EURO weakness can be attributed to this news. Weaker second tier data released in the manufacturing and industrial sectors also added to the weakening bias. The week ahead is light on top tier data with just German GDP and economic sentiment due Tuesday to draw any attention. Remember the peripheral Eurozone member Govt debt issues are never too far from the surface. Friday saw a sharp blowout in the cost of Govt debt funding for Portugal. So this issue may return to the spotlight again this week.
In Australia the weaker than expected retail sales numbers for December hardly caused a ripple, but points towards a two speed economy with the mining/energy sectors proving the driver of growth while the remainder of the domestic economy slows. The has not gone unnoticed by New Zealand politicians either. Prime Minister John Key and Finance Minister Bill English both referring to the situation at different times during the week. With 40% of New Zealand’s exports going to Australia, the last thing New Zealand needs at this stage of its faltering recovery, is a slowing Australian market. The Employment numbers in Australia remain strong with 24.5k jobs added and the Unemployment rate stable at a low 5%.
In New Zealand the December retail sales number released today disappointed at -1.1% versus expectation of -0.3%.  NZ producer price index on Thursday, will provide further indication of pricing of inflationary pressures at the wholesale level.
In China the core interest rate was raised again for the third time by 25pts, in a further attempt to curb inflationary pressure. No major surprise to the markets, as pressures are likely to persist, so further measures should be expected. As noted previously, these will impact  over the medium term on the demand for Australian exports, if China is unable to get inflation under control. The longer it remains untamed, the faster they will have to put the brakes on the growth. Should we see a forced slow down in China through 2011-12, the Australian dollar will be impacted more so than the soft commodity exporting NZD.
Topics: Weekly FX February 2011

NZ Retail Sales data disappoints

Written by Andrew Isbister on February 14th, 2011.      0 comments

10:49 AM (NZT)14 Feb. NZ Retail Sales month to month data just released at -1.1%, came in slightly worse than market projections of -0.3%.
The retail sales “change” number is the total value of sales at the retail level, and it is released monthly, about 45 days after the month ends.
Retail sales data is the earliest and broadest look at vital consumer spending data, given it is the primary gauge of consumer spending, which accounts for a huge amount of the overall economic activity.
Retail sales data is very volatile. In the past 12 months the number has oscillated between negative and positive territory on a regular basis. This is in line with the uncertain path our economy continues to be on at present. NZD has weakened, but only slightly off the back of this number.
          Last 24 hours trade
  Current level Pre-NZ RS Change since NZ R   Low High
NZD/USD 0.7560 0.7585 -0.2%   0.7554 0.7643
AUD/USD 0.9995 1.0005 -0.1%   0.9962 1.0054
NZD/AUD 0.7580 0.7583 0.0%   0.7570 0.7624
AUD/NZD 1.3192 1.3187 0.0%   1.3116 1.3210
NZD/GBP 0.4735 0.4745 -0.2%   0.4708 0.4757
NZD/EUR 0.5603 0.5620 -0.3%   0.5582 0.5621
NZD/JPY 63.25 63.33 0.1%   63.11 63.70
NZD/CAD 0.7485 0.7500 -0.2%   0.7501 0.7613

Australian Employment numbers bang on expectations and remain strong.

Written by Sam Coxhead on February 10th, 2011.      0 comments

11:50 AM (AEST) 10 Feb : The Australian Employment numbers just released showed a 24.5K increase in job numbers (expected 18k) and the Unemployment rate is unchanged from the previous level of 5.0%.
This has not impacted the AUD , which has been so resilient of late. The market still looks to be reasonably range bound against the USD , being comfortable in the 1.0000 to 1.0200 range.
In the offshore session the EUR has been well supported , even in the face of the news that German Central Bank head Alex Weber would not be standing for the upcoming vacancy as head of the ECB. Weber had been widely picked as the natural successor to France’s Jean Claude Trichet, and has been known as a being tough on inflation in his time with the Bundesbank.
US Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke testified on Capitol Hill today. He acknowledged that the economic activity had increased, but re-iterated previous comments that “until a sustained period of job creation, we can not consider the recovery to be truly established”. So it looks like the full 600billion worth of Quantitative Easing will be acted upon, and US rates will remain at incredibly low levels for the foreseeable future.
          Last 24 hours trade
  Current level Pre-AU Employ Chge since AU EMPLOY   Low High
NZD/USD 0.7713 0.7712 0.0%   0.7703 0.7755
AUD/USD 1.0103 1.0104 0.0%   1.0089 1.0152
NZD/AUD 0.7633 0.7634 0.0%   0.7602 0.7656
AUD/NZD 1.3101 1.3099 0.0%   1.3062 1.3154
NZD/GBP 0.4792 0.4793 0.0%   0.4786 0.4830
NZD/EUR 0.5621 0.5622 0.0%   0.5615 0.5694
NZD/JPY 63.55 63.57 0.0%   63.45 63.88
NZD/CAD 0.7670 0.7670 0.0%   0.7659 0.7719

NZ Finance Minister warns of risks to growth

Written by Sam Coxhead on February 9th, 2011.      0 comments

4:50 PM 9th Feb 2011 (NZT) New Zealand Finance Minister Bill English spoke to the Parlimentary Finance and Expenbditure Comittee today. When asked of his opinion of growth in the last quarter of 2011, he said that it was a possibility that NZ entered a technical doubnle dip recession, meaning that we may see 2nd quarter of negative GDP growth. The GDP figure is due for release on 24 March.

English also pointed towards the quickly slowing non-resource sector in Australia as another hurdle to growth for the struggling NZ economy.

Straight after his comments his the media industry the New Zealand dollar was sold against all of its major trading partners. The next few sessions will be interesting to watch as sometimes comments like these can be a catalyst for market moves.

    Last 24 hours trade
  Current level Low  High
NZD/USD 0.7715 0.7707 0.7787
AUD/USD 1.0140 1.0414 1.0190
NZD/AUD 0.7610 0.7587 0.7660
AUD/NZD 1.3140 1.3046 1.3151
NZD/GBP 0.4803 0.4777 0.4843
NZD/EUR 0.5655 0.5652 0.5712
NZD/JPY 63.53 63.45 63.92
NZD/CAD 0.7675 0.7636 0.7738