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NZ dollar gains heading into month-, year-end

NZ dollar gains across the board as South Pacific favoured in month end

By Paul McBeth

Dec. 30 (BusinessWire) – The New Zealand dollar gained as some fund managers preparing for month-end flowed into the trans-Tasman currencies to square up their position heading into January.

The kiwi surged 1.1% on a trade-weighted basis as “real money flows and custodian accounts square up their positions for month-end,” according to Bank of New Zealand currency strategist Danica Hampton. The currency has gained 0.5% to 71.90 U.S. cents this month after yesterday’s gain, and may avoid its third straight monthly decline.

“The U.S. dollar was a little bit heavy across the board and the Euro came off the boil, which left kiwi and Aussie as the stand-out performers,” Hampton said, referring to the trans-Tasman currencies colloquially. “People are looking to 2010 with the world not as scary as it might have been at the beginning of 2009.”

The kiwi climbed to 71.90 U.S. cents from 71.26 cents yesterday and surged to 65.73 on the trade-weighted index, or TWI, a measure of the currency against a basket of five trading partners, from 64.99. It gained to 66.13 yen from 65.24 yen yesterday, and rose to 80.34 Australian cents from 79.71 cents. It rose to 50.11 euro cents from 49.36 cents yesterday, and jumped to 45.18 pence from 44.38 pence.

Hampton said the currency may trade between 71.40 U.S. cents and 72.80 cents today, and will “probably push up towards 73 cents in the next few sessions.”

Stocks on Wall Street were flat amid data showing rising consumer confidence. The Conference Board’s consumer confidence index gained in line with expectations, adding fuel to speculation the Federal Reserve will begin withdrawing its extraordinary stimulus measures earlier than anticipated.


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