The Opening Bell: Where currencies start on Friday, August 25, 2017

By Dan Bell

The NZDUSD opens at 0.7209 (mid-rate) this morning.

The NZD is marginally lower but remains at risk of falling further after breaking through the 0.7200 key level ahead of the central banker’s symposium in Jackson Hole this weekend.

While the Kiwi opens today just above the 0.7200 support level, it is only a matter of time before the 200 moving day average around 0.7125 is tested.

There is a combination of factors for NZD weakness. Weaker economic forecasts combined with the pre-election fiscal update on Wednesday this week, some position unwinding, and election uncertainty.

UK gross domestic product (GDP) in volume terms was estimated to have increased by 0.3% between Q1 and Q2 2017, unrevised from the preliminary estimate.

In the week ending August 19, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 234,000, an increase of 2,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 232,000. The 4-week moving average was 237,750, a decrease of 2,750 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 240,500.

Oil prices tumbled overnight despite the fact that Hurricane Harvey is “rapidly strengthening” in the Gulf of Mexico. If it makes landfall, it will be the first hurricane to hit Texas since 2008. To prepare for the storm, producers in the region have been shutting down their oil rigs. West Texas Intermediate crude oil, the US benchmark, was down by 1.8% overnight to $47.52.

Overnight data tonight includes German Business climate, US Core Durable Goods Orders, Fed Chair Yellen and ECB President Draghi Speaks at the Jackson Hole Symposium in the state of Wyoming.

Global equity markets are mixed – Dow -0.09%, S&P 500 -0.18%, FTSE +0.33%, DAX +0.05%, CAC -0.04%, Nikkei -0.42%, Shanghai -0.49%.

Gold prices are down $3 or 0.2% trading at $1,285 an ounce. WTI Crude Oil prices gave back some recent gains and are down 1.8% trading at $47.52 a barrel.

Current indicative rates:

NZDUSD       0.7209      -0.3%
NZDEUR       0.6107      -0.2%
NZDGBP       0.5629      -0.3%
NZDJPY         78.93       0.2%
NZDAUD       0.9122      -0.3%
NZDCAD       0.9031      -0.4%
GBPNZD       1.7754       0.3%

Upcoming Data releases (NZST):

  • GBP – UK Bank holiday on Monday

 

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

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