The New Zealand dollar cracked the 76 US cent mark on Thursday morning, but slipped back slightly after stocks fell on Wall Street.
BNZ currency strategist Danica Hampton says increasing risk appetite, a weaker US dollar and improved confidence in the global economic recovery, prompted investors to flock to higher-yielding currencies like the kiwi.
The New Zealand dollar reached 76.35 US cents just before 7am, but later dropped to 75.69 US cents after a sharp turnaround in US stock markets.
Ms Hampton says there is a lot of uncertainty about where the dollar will head next.
This week's rise
The kiwi broke the 75 US cent mark on Tuesday, and climbed higher on Wednesday after Reserve Bank Govenor Dr Allan Bollard said a high currency was not necessarily a barrier to higher interest rates.
The dollar last hit 76 US cents on 22 July last year, when it was trading at 76.11 US cents.
At 12.35 pm, the New Zealand dollar was trading at 75.7 US cents, 81.68 Australian cents, 45.58 pence, 68.84 yen and 0.5044 euro. The Trade Weighted Index was at 67.53.