Kiwi slips ahead of central bank meetings in Europe
BUSINESSDESK: The New Zealand dollar slipped in local trading as investor appetite for riskier assets dimmed in the lead-up to central bank meetings in Europe which are expected to add more monetary stimulus to the indebted region.
The kiwi fell to 80.21 US cents at 5pm from 80.36 cents at 8am, while the trade-weighted index was little changed at 72.51 from 72.57.
Stocks across Asia Pacific dipped with both Japan's Nikkei 225 index and Hong Kong's Hang Seng index down 0.3%, and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 index slipped 0.2%.
That comes as investors prepare for looser monetary policy in England and across Europe when their respective central banks meet tomorrow.
The Bank of England is tipped to expand its asset purchase programme £50 billion to £375 billion in a bid to lift Britain out of its double-dip recession, while the ECB is expected to trim its benchmark rate a quarter-point to 0.75%, according to Bloomberg surveys.
"What's more important is what [the ECB] might do in the near-term, particularly if they signal QE," said Imre Speizer, market strategist at Westpac Banking. The kiwi "looks fairly stretched up here" and is poised for a step lower once investor sentiment dims.
Traders will also be looking at US employment data overnight tomorrow, when non-farm payrolls are expected to show the world's biggest economy added 90,000 jobs last month, according to a Reuters survey.
Mr Speizer said the manufacturing figures earlier this week threw a low to analysts, and a downside surprise may pop investor optimism.
The New Zealand dollar was little changed at 64.01 euro cents 63.92 cents yesterday, and traded at 51.43 pence from 51.33 pence yesterday. It fell to 64.02 yen from 64.18 yen yesterday, and was little changed at 78.20 Australian cents from 78.17 cents.