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Australia dollar weathers trade blow NZ$ holds firm

Australia dollar weathers trade blow NZ$ holds firm

CANBERRA: The Australian and New Zealand dollars held near multi-week highs on Friday as optimism on global growth supported risk appetites and commodity prices. The Aussie dollar was parked at $0.7848, having touched an 11-week peak of $0.7870. Traders still reported stiff resistance at $0.7884 and $0.7898, which However, analysts cautioned the figures did not fully reflect a sharp increase in spot iron ore prices seen during November. The statistics bureau assumes a price until it gets the true figures from miners which can take a number of months.

That suggests exports will be revised higher in time, particularly as iron ore is Australia’s single biggest earner bringing in around A$7 billion ($5.49 billion) a month. Prices have climbed from a low of $58.62 at the start of November to $74.61 this week, a rise of 27 percent. That swing alone would be worth around A$1.9 billion a month in extra export revenue. Prices for other major commodity exports, including copper, coal and liquefied natural gas, have also been trending higher in the last couple of months. “Positives remain in the LNG sector as exports lift with additional capacity coming on stream and prices firm, while the Asian region continues to be a solid source of demand for services exports,” said Simon Murray, an economist at Westpac.

Earnings from services, such as tourism and travel, stood at A$7.4 billion in November, up 11 percent on a year earlier.

The New Zealand dollar had no data to worry about and hung onto all its gains on a broadly softer U.S. currency. It was last at $0.7150, just off an 11-week top of $0.7163.