The New Zealand dollar fell as fears over China's financial sector re-emerged on reports a troubled trust product won't be bailed out, ahead of economic data which is expected to show the world's second-biggest economy is still growing, albeit at a slower pace.
The kiwi fell to 82.46 US cents at 8am from 82.62 cents at the close of trading in New York on Friday, and 82.99 cents at 5pm in Wellington. The trade-weighted index dropped to 78.40 from 78.78 last week.
China's economy grew at an annual pace of 7.6 percent in the fourth quarter, according to a Reuters poll of economists, slowing from 7.8 percent in the previous quarter. Traders will be monitoring the strength of the gross domestic product, industrial production and retail sales data after media reports that Industrial & Commercial Bank of China is refusing to bail out a troubled 3 billion yuan trust product reignited fears over the stability of the nation's financial system.
"Market chatter is talking about credit conditions in China and increasing concerns over the shadow banking sector," said Sam Tuck, senior FX strategist at ANZ New Zealand in Auckland. "If the Chinese data comes in softer, the Aussie and kiwi will struggle."
US markets are closed on Monday for Martin Luther King Day, putting the Chinese data under more scrutiny.
New Zealand inflation figures tomorrow are expected to show an annual pace of 1.4 percent, which economists say will be benign enough for the Reserve Bank to hold off hiking interest rates until March.
The local currency fell to 85.80 yen at 8am in Wellington from 86.58 yen last week, and decreased to 93.93 Australian cents from 94.11 cents. It slipped to 60.86 euro cents from 60.95 cents last week, and dropped to 50.20 British pence from 50.79 pence.
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