The risk-sensitive Australian Dollar moved higher versus the US Dollar overnight as equity traders bought US stocks. AUD/USD pushed to its highest level since August 13 while the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 Index closed 0.19% higher. A broad move lower in the US Dollar aided the Aussie Dollar.
Australia’s second-quarter GDP print beat estimates on Wednesday, which likely gave the currency pair an added tailwind.
Australia is set to report its July trade balance today. Analysts expect the figure to cross the wires at A$10.2 billion, a small decline from June’s A$10.5 billion print. Import strength will help analysts gauge consumer strength amid ongoing lockdowns across Victoria and New South Wales (NSW).
The economic crippling restrictions crippled consumer consumption within the quarter, which may translate to a weaker import figure. Exports may help shed light on some of Australia’s key trading partners, such as China, with iron ore being a key export to the economic powerhouse.
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Elsewhere, New Zealand reported its second-quarter terms of trade this morning. Export prices rose 8.3%, up from -0.8% in Q1 and over the consensus estimate of 3%. Import prices came across at 4.8%, up from -0.8% and above the estimate of 1.8%. Earlier this week, New Zealand’s ANZ business confidence index dropped to -14.2 for August.
That is the lowest read since October 2020. The recent lockdowns in Auckland appear to be a driving factor for the downbeat confidence print.
Oil benchmarks gave up early-session gains made on a larger-than-expected draw in US inventories, according to EIA data. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, collectively known as OPEC+, decided to keep increasing output at the monthly pace of 400k additional barrels per day (BPD).
That decision may keep some overhead pressure on prices in the near term, particularly if Covid infections worsen globally. (Continue reading with DailyFX)