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Holiday weekends mean Kiwi starts the week quietly

New Zealand dollar trading got off to a slow start today because of the regional holiday in Wellington and Martin Luther King holiday weekend in the US.

The kiwi was at 83.69 US cents at 8am, little changed from 83.54 cents at 5pm on Friday, when it fell after weaker-than-expected December quarter consumers price index data implied interest rates are not going to rise for some time.

"There was position-squaring ahead of the long weekend on Friday and we've obviously got the Bank of Japan [monetary policy statement] this week," Stuart Ive at HiFX says.

The kiwi was at 75.34 yen at 8am, up from 75.18 on Friday and it is expected to be a big week for that cross, with the BoJ statement due on Tuesday afternoon New Zealand time.

"What we expect to see from the Bank of Japan is them adding further stimulus to their economy. In the last week the yen has weakened considerably," Mr Ive says.

The kiwi is expected to have an upward bias this week, moving toward 84.20 US cents, while having support at 83.30 cents.

"The local economic calendars are empty and there is a US holiday, probably making today a quiet one for markets," Imre Speizer, senior markets strategist at Westpac, says.

Risky assets were under pressure in London, he says. Traders also weighed a disappointing earnings report from Intel against news that US Republicans proposed a three-month debt ceiling in return for spending cuts.

The kiwi was at 79.58 Australian cents at 8am from 79.42 cents at 5pm on Friday, was 62.86 euro from 62.41 euro and 52.70 British pence from 52.27.

The trade-weighted index was at 75.34 from 75.25.

(BusinessDesk)