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NZ dollar heads for 1.2% weekly fall in risk-averse markets

NZ dollar heads for 1.2% weekly fall in risk-averse markets

By Rebecca Howard

Oct. 26 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand dollar is headed for a 1.2 percent weekly fall against the greenback as equity markets continue to get battered by risk-averse investors.

The kiwi traded at 64.79 US cents at 5pm in Wellington from 65.13 US cents at 8am and from 65.22 cents yesterday. It was at 65.61 US cents last Friday. The trade-weighted index was at 71.37 from 71.60.

"It's all US dollar-driven and equity-driven and risk-off driven," said Tim Kelleher, head of institutional foreign exchange sales at ASB Bank.

Wall Street fared better overnight with the Dow Jones Industrial Average adding 401 points, or 1.6 percent, after tumbling more than 600 points in the prior session. The Nasdaq Composite added 2.95 percent but has shed almost two-thirds of its 2018 gains this month.

Disappointing quarterly reports from and Alphabet Inc after the close quickly dashed any enthusiasm.

"Those results were pretty ugly," Kelleher said.

US stock futures turned negative on broad worries about corporate earnings and the outlook for the US economy. That dented any appetite for commodity currencies like the kiwi and the Australian dollar, he said.

The New Zealand dollar traded at 92.12 Australian cents from 92.07 cents yesterday.

It traded at 56.99 euro cents from 57.15 cents yesterday after the euro recovered slightly from an overnight fall when European Central Bank President Mario Draghi reiterated that the central bank will adopt a tightening policy despite worries around the eurozone's growth outlook and political turmoil in Italy.

The kiwi was at 50.55 British pence from 50.59 pence and traded at 72.66 yen from 73.09 yen as investors sought havens. It decreased to 4.5079 Chinese yuan from 4.5278 yuan.

Looking ahead, investors will be waiting for third-quarter US gross domestic product numbers overnight for a steer on the US economy.

New Zealand's two-year swap rate fell 1 basis point to 1.99 percent while the 10-year swaps fell 3 basis points to 2.79 percent.


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