Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


NZ dollar's drop stokes talk of intervention

NZ dollar's sharp decline raises speculation of Reserve Bank intervention

By Tina Morrison

Aug. 25 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand dollar dropped sharply in mid morning trade on Monday, shedding half a US cent in about five minutes and prompting speculation of Reserve Bank intervention.

The kiwi fell, from 9:15am when it was trading at 83.96 US cents, to 83.40 US cents at 9:21am. The local currency subsequently touched a six-month low of 83.36 US cents and was recently trading at 83.44 cents.

New Zealand's Reserve Bank has previously said the local currency is too high and raised the possibility it could intervene in the market by selling kiwi in an attempt to push it down.

Traders speculated today's sharp drop could have been caused by the central bank taking advantage of thin liquidity on a Monday morning, following a meeting of central bankers at Jackson Hole in the US at the weekend which strengthened the US dollar. However, the currency's move could also be attributed to a large options or hedging transaction by a trading bank.

"It dropped hard and fast," said Michael Johnston, a senior trader at HiFX. "It certainly had the hallmarks of something the Reserve Bank could do, it ticks a few of their boxes to justify intervention. They want to intervene when they have maximum market impact. I think Monday morning when no one else is in and liquidity is pretty thin, particularly after a Jackson Hole where they are less dovish on the US economy, so that's at the margin good for the US dollar as well so it's pulling the kiwi in the direction that they want it to go to."

However HiFX's Johnston said the rumours circulating in the market about intervention were unconfirmed and the drop could also be the result of a large currency flow as a result of an options structure being hedged by a trading bank.

"It's certainly not gospel," he said. "If not, then somebody is doing them a favour. If you wanted to move the kiwi, Monday morning is certainly a pretty good time. It's quite an opportune time to have maximum bang for your buck."

The Reserve Bank doesn't comment outside of its monthly disclosure on foreign currency assets and liabilities, spokesman Angus Barclay said. On Thursday, the bank is scheduled to publish its data for July.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Land & Water Forum: Fourth Report On Water Management

The Land and Water Forum (LWF) today published its fourth report, outlining 60 new consensus recommendations for how New Zealand should improve its management of fresh water and calling on the Government to urgently adopt all of its recommendations from earlier reports. More>>



Welcome Home: Record High Migration Stokes 41-Year High Population Growth

New Zealand annual net migration hit a new high in October as more people arrived from than departed for Australia for the first time in more than 20 years. More>>


Citizens' Advice Bureau: Report Shows Desperate Housing Situation Throughout NZ

CAB's in-depth analysis of over 2000 client enquiries about emergency accommodation shows vulnerable families, pregnant women and children living in cars and garages, even after seeking assistance from the Ministry of Social Development and Housing New Zealand. More>>


Speaking For The Bees: Greens Call For Neonicotinoid Pesticide Ban

The National Government should ban the use of controversial pesticides called neonicotinoids after evidence has revealed that even at low doses they cause harm to bee populations, the Green Party said today. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news