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HiFX morning Update, March 8, 2019

The NZDUSD opens a little lower at 0.6757 (mid-rate) this morning.

The EURUSD sank to a level last since June 2017 after the European Central Bank (ECB) changed tack on its tightening plan and postponed its first post-crisis interest rate hike until 2020 and launched a new rounds of cheap loans to banks.

The ECB move was more aggressive than the market anticipated and underlined how a global trade war, Brexit uncertainty, and continuing Italy debt concerns has weighed on economic growth across the EU.

The ECB, RBA, US Fed, Bank of Canada, have all adopted a more dovish tone towards interest rate hikes recently. Our own RBNZ has not been quite as dovish, although the domestic interest rate markets have priced in 68% probability of a 0.25% rate cut within the next 12 months.

Australian retail sales rose a meagre 0.1% in January, in what is another blow to retailers. Aussie consumer spending has been weighed down by record-high household debt and lethargic wage growth.

There was no front-line data out of the US overnight. However, the closely-watched and influential US non-farm payrolls employment figures hit the wires in the very early hours of tomorrow morning.

Brexit deal malaise continues.

There is no data scheduled on the NZ calendar today.

Global equity markets were mostly lower on the day - Dow -0.8%, S&P 500 -0.8%, FTSE -0.5%, DAX -0.6%, CAC -0.4%, Nikkei -0.7%, Shanghai +0.1%.

Gold prices are flat USD$1,286 an ounce, while WTI Crude Oil prices climbed 0.9% to US$56.59 per barrel.

ends

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