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New Zealand dollar tumbles, US ADP to set the tone
NZD slides as unemployment report disappoints
The New Zealand extended losses on Wednesday amid the release of disappointing data from the job market. After grinding lower yesterday, NZD/USD fell another 0.55% to 0.7425, its lowest level of the past five days. Despite the fact that the second-quarter unemployment rate matched estimate of 4.8%, down from 4.9% in the previous one, the details do not look that great. The employment change shrank 0.2%q/q (+0.7% expected) in the June quarter, while previous quarter’s print was downwardly revised to 1.1%. The participation rate slip to 70% from 70.6%, while average hourly earnings grew 0.8%q/q, compared to 0.9% median forecast.
That gets to be a lot of disappointing data from the Kiwi economy. The last inflation report already showed that a downside adjust to the forecast may be necessary. This unemployment report could be the beginning of the end of the multi-month rally. Investors are heavily skewed to the upside in NZD/USD with long net speculative position reaching 63.70% of total open position. In addition, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, which will hold a monetary policy meeting next Wednesday, will likely sound dovish. Indeed, the RBNZ is never tired of emphasizing the excess strength of the Kiwi, even more when economic data are on the slim edge.
In our opinion, the risk is definitely on the downside and a reversal of the NZD/USD is more than likely, especially against the backdrop of extreme speculative positioning.
High expectations for the US ADP data
Today we get US labor ADP data ahead of the NFP report on Friday. Bloomberg Survey indicates new jobs creation for July of 190k compared to the prior June read of 158k. The overall sentiment is positive and it has been 7 years that the data print positive. There is the widespread idea that the US economy is recovering. However we rather believe that the US economy is stalling. GDP growth, is by the way in its second-worst year since 1959. On top of that credit demand is contracting which should weigh on growth and tax receipts are negative.
This is why traders will clearly have the downside risks in the back of their minds. While ADP has had a history of spectacular misses for predicting NFPs over the past months, ADP has often been a pretty accurate forecast for the NFP change.
We suspect that ADP is likely to print below the current expectations. A poor labor read will keep adding downside pressures on the greenback lower, and fuel the main country equity indexes as a US weak economy will push away Fed rate-tightening policy discussion. We think that the EURUSD is heading towards 1.20.