A review of things you need to know before you go home on Wednesday; Auckland house sales volumes surge, jobs market weakens, China's services expand, swap rates rise, NZD holds

Here are the key things you need to know before you leave work today.

TODAY’S MORTGAGE RATE CHANGES
There were no mortgage rate changes announced today.

TODAY’S DEPOSIT RATE CHANGES
Heretaunga Building Society cut their 6 month TD rate today.

TODAY’S KEY DATA
Global dairy prices sink another -9.3% ahead of Fonterra’s board meeting on Friday which will decide the forecast milk price for farmers this season, ANZ now picks a payout level of around $3.50/kgMS.

BUBBLE CITY
Auckland house sales volumes surged in July but prices flattened out. Barfoot & Thompson says Auckland housing market is now “fully priced”. Apart from December 2014, Barfoots now have their lowest number of listings since this data was publicly available in 2001, representing just 9.2 weeks of sales at the current rates. Very low supply accentuates the demand pressures.

A TOUGH CROWD
Analysts generally were unimpressed with our employment and labour income data today, branding it ‘weak’. The participation rate was 68.9%* at June, employment levels are up +67,800 year-on-year when the labour force rose +77,800 in the same period. The average hourly wage was up +2.8% and the average weekly earnings were up +3.2% over the year. Those analysts are damn hard to impress. (* All data in my review is ‘actual’ and not ‘seasonally adjusted’.) But maybe the RBNZ will look at ~3% wage inflation differently.

CHINA SERVICES STAR
We hear all the time that China’s factories are struggling. But data out today shows that activity in their services sector expanded at its fastest pace in 11 months in July, thanks to stronger new business.

WHOLESALE RATES RISE
Swap rates rose today with a slightly steeper bias. They are up +2 bps to five years, +5 bps to 10 years. The 90 day bank bill rate has not had the same effect and is still at a low 3.03%.

NZ DOLLAR HOLDS, JUST
The US dollar has gained sharply today, especially against the euro. Our currency suffered from that and the two negative local data events today. But the Kiwi’s decline is less than you might expect in the circumstances. The NZ dollar is currently at 65.3 USc, at 88.7 AUc, and at 60.1 euro cents. The TWI is at 70.2. Check our real-time charts here.

You can now see an animation of this chart. Click on it, or click here.

Daily exchange rates

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for(i=0;i

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