23 Sep 2009

Dollar hits 14-month high against Greenback

6:32 pm on 23 September 2009

The New Zealand dollar jumped over the US 73 cent mark on Wednesday after official figures showed the economy is coming out of recession three months earlier than expected.

The economy expanded by 0.1% in the June quarter - ending five straight quarters of recession. The slight increase in gross domestic product was driven by an 8% jump in log exports, according to Statistics New Zealand.

The dollar jumped 1c against the Greenback to a 14-month high of US73.15c following the release of the GDP figures on Wednesday.

This followed a 2c increase on Tuesday on the back of more positive economic news. Dairy cooperative Fonterra upgraded its milk payout forecast to farmers and New Zealand's current account deficit fell sharply.

BNZ currency strategist Mike Jones says recent strength in the New Zealand dollar has been driven by weakness in the US currency.

However, he says the good economic news of recent days suggests the dollar's renewed strength is on a surer footing, and is picking the kiwi to peak at US75c.