The Opening Bell: Where currencies start on Friday, July 7, 2017

By Dan Bell

The NZDUSD opens at 0.7274 (mid-rate) this morning.

The NZD and AUD were the worst performing of the G10 currencies overnight encountering a myriad of U.S. data releases.

U.S. Private sector employment increased by 158,000 jobs from May to June, a number that economists who released the report said was still strong, but stood well below the robust 230,000 number the report showed in May. The reading also was considerably below the 185,000 gain that economists surveyed by Reuters expected.

In the week ending July 1, the advance figure for U.S. seasonally adjusted initial claims was 248,000, an increase of 4,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 244,000. The 4-week moving average was 243,000, an increase of 750 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 242,250.

U.S. Economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew in June for the 90th consecutive month. The Non-Manufacturing Index registered 57.4%, which is half a percentage point higher than the May reading of 56.9%. This represents continued growth in the non-manufacturing sector at a slightly faster rate.

The U.S. Trade deficit narrowed as exports hit a two year high. The goods and services deficit was $46.5 billion in May, down $1.1 billion from $47.6 billion in April, revised. May exports were $192.0 billion, $0.9 billion more than April exports. May imports were $238.5 billion, $0.2 billion less than April imports. The May decrease in the goods and services deficit reflected a decrease in the goods deficit of $0.9 billion to $67.5 billion and an increase in the services surplus of $0.2 billion to $21.0 billion.

Oil prices rallied Thursday night, extending earlier gains after data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration showed that domestic crude supplies dropped by 6.3 million barrels for the week ended June 30. That topped forecasts for a decline of 1.6 million barrels, and also came in above the fall of 5.8 million barrels reported by the American Petroleum Institute late Wednesday when oil fell 4.2%. Supply data were released a day late because of Tuesday’s Independence Day holiday.

FOMC Member Powell spoke on “The Case for Housing Finance Reform” at the American Enterprise Institute, Washington, D.C.

G20 meetings begin tonight and continue Saturday.

Global equity markets are a sea of red with only China bucking the trend:  Dow -0.61%, S&P 500 -0.77%, FTSE -0.41%, DAX -0.58%, CAC -0.53%, Nikkei -0.44%, Shanghai +0.17%

Gold prices are up $3 or 0.2% to $1,224 an ounce. .WTI Crude Oil prices have rebounded modestly up 0.5% currently trading at $45.35 a barrel.

Current indicative rates:

NZDUSD       0.7274      -0.2%
NZDEUR       0.6370      -0.8%
NZDGBP       0.5606      -0.6%
NZDJPY         82.37       -0.1%
NZDAUD       0.9586       0.0%
NZDCAD       0.9425      -0.3%
GBPNZD       1.7826      -0.3%


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

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