The Opening Bell: Where currencies start on Monday, December 4, 2017

By Dan Bell

The NZDUSD opens at 0.6872 (mid-rate) this morning.

Markets were rocked on Friday by news that the former US National Security Adviser Michael Flynn had pled guilty to lying to the FBI, and that he is cooperating with prosecutors in the investigation of Russian meddling in last year’s presidential election. The USD along with US equities, which were on the rise after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that GOP leaders had enough votes to pass the new tax reform bill, quickly reversed.

Saturday’s scheduled US economic data releases were mixed with construction spending for the month of October printing well ahead of expectations, surging by 1.4% (exp +0.5%), while the purchasing managers index for the month of November edged down to 58.2 from 58.7 in October. Economists had expected the index to pull back to 58.4.

The CAD was the strongest performing of the G10 currencies on Friday, benefitting from an increase in oil prices along with better than forecast GDP and employment data releases. After edging down 0.1% in August gross domestic product increased by 0.2% in September, while November’s labour force survey reported employment increased by 79k jobs, with unemployment falling to 5.9% from Octobers 6.3% reading.

The main domestic driver for the NZD this week will be Tuesday evening’s GDT auction.

Global equity markets closed out the week mixed, – Dow -0.17%, S&P 500 -0.20%, FTSE -0.36%, DAX -1.25%, CAC -1.04%, Nikkei +0.41%, Shanghai +0.01%.

Gold prices edged higher on Friday, up 0.4% closing out the week at $1,282 an ounce, WTI Crude Oil prices surged higher on Friday, up 1.7% closing out the week $58.36 a barrel.

Current indicative rates:

NZDUSD    0.6872     -0.3%
NZDEUR    0.5791     -0.3%
NZDGBP    0.5111     -0.4%
NZDJPY      77.55       0.6%
NZDAUD    0.9035     -0.7%
NZDCAD    0.8725     -1.5%
GBPNZD    1.9566      0.4%

Upcoming Data releases (NZST):

  • 10:45am NZ Overseas Trade Index

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

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