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Aussie holds steady, kiwi moves lower in late trade

8/14/2017, 3:07:28 PMMarket Analysis
Aussie holds steady, kiwi moves lower in late trade

The Australian dollar was steady against its U.S. counterpart on Monday, while the New Zealand dollar slipped lower despite the release of upbeat local retail sales data, as disappointing economic reports from China dampened risk sentiment.

AUD/USD was little changed at 0.7892.

The greenback mildly recovered from losses posted on Friday after the U.S. Commerce Department said consumer prices rose less-than-expected last month. A separate report released a day earlier showed that producer price inflation and its core reading both unexpectedly declined in July.

The weak data was seen as lowering chances that the Federal Reserve will stick to its plans for a third interest rate hike this year.

NZD/USD slipped 0.15% to trade at 0.7309.

Earlier Monday, Statistics New Zealand said retail sales increased by 2.0% in the second quarter, beating expectations for a 0.7% rise.

Core retail sales, which exclude automobiles and gas stations, gained 2.1% in the three months to June, after an upwardly revised 1.5% gain in the previous quarter.

But demand for risk-related assets remained weak after a separate report on Friday showed that China’s industrial production rose 6.4% in July, below expectations for an increase of 7.2%.

Fixed asset investment and retail sales also rose less-than-expected last month.

The weak data fueled fresh concerns over a slowdown in the world’s second largest economy. China is Australia’s biggest export partner and New Zealand’s second biggest export partner.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.11% at 93.09, just off a one-week low of 92.83 hit on Friday.