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$A unchanged on Chinese trade data

Reported by AAP
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
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Commonwealth Bank Of Australia.
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The Australian dollar is almost unchanged from its pre-Easter levels despite Chinese trade data showing weaker than expected imports.

At 1700 AEST on Tuesday, the Australian dollar was trading at 103.03 US cents, down marginally from 103.05 US cents at the last local close on Thursday.

The local currency was at 83.77 Japanese yen, down from 83.74 yen on Thursday, and at 78.68 euro cents, from 78.36 euro cents.

Commonwealth Bank currency strategist Peter Dragicevich said the Australian dollar rallied on Tuesday afternoon following the release of stronger than expected Chinese trade data.

Official Chinese data showed a trade surplus of $5.35 billion in March, a stark turnaround from a $31.48 billion deficit in February.

Mr Dragicevich said the Australian dollar dropped back as traders took a closer look at the data.

"The headline number was stronger than expected, but once traders looked through the details they saw that import growth into China was actually a little bit weaker than expected.

"That put some downward pressure on the Aussie later in the day but it has remained relatively range-bound today."

Mr Dragicevich said Chinese data was likely to be the main driver of the Australian dollar's movements this week.

China will release gross domestic product data for the March quarter on Friday, which is expected to show a weaker result than previous quarters.

He said a series of speeches from US Federal Reserve board members later this week could help boost the Australian dollar.

"There are a lot of Fed voting members speaking in the next few days and a lot of them are at the dovish end of the spectrum.

"It will be interesting to see whether they indicate whether there is further scope for monetary easing (in the US).

"Any sign that the door is still open (to easing) will weigh on the US dollar and provide support for the Aussie."

Meanwhile, Australian bond futures continued their rally after the release of weaker than expected US employment figures on Friday.

US non-farm payrolls data, released on Good Friday, showed 120,000 jobs were created in March, well below the market expectation of 203,000 jobs.

JP Morgan interest rate strategist Sally Auld said Australian bonds were attractive to traders wanting to find a safe-haven investment on the back of the poor data.

At 1630 AEST on Tuesday, the June 10-year bond futures contract was trading at 96.170 (implying a yield of 3.830 per cent), up from 95.995 (4.005 per cent) last Thursday.

The June three-year bond futures contract was at 96.760 (3.240 per cent), up from 96.580 (3.420 per cent).

The RBA's trade weighted index was at 76.5, up from 76.4 on Thursday.

02/11/2014 00:13Sydney, Australia. 2 November,2014
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