10 Oct 2013

NZ dollar falls against US

7:33 pm on 10 October 2013

The New Zealand dollar fell about half a US cent on Thursday as all eyes remained on whether the United States government will re-open and whether it can avoid defaulting on its debts.

Bancorp Treasury Services senior client advisor Peter Cavanaugh says the market appears hopeful the politicians will reach at least an interim agreement.

He says not only the New Zealand dollar weaker against the US, but so is the Australian dollar, the pound, the euro and the yen.

Mr Cavanaugh says the markets seem to be picking that the US will avoid the debt default and that they will come to an agreement, albeit it an interim one, to extend the debt ceiling.

He says that just leaves them haggling over the budget and whether the US government is going to be funded.

At about 5pm, the kiwi was trading at 82.60 US cents. It was marginally down at 87.71 Australian cents and slightly higher at 51.82 British pence but unchanged at 0.6116 euro and 80.66 yen.

Share market little changed

The share market was little changed, the benchmark Top 50 Index closing up 7 points at 4717.

Mighty River Power shares rose as high as $2.26 compared with Wednesday's close at $2.20 after the company announced its $50 million share buyback.

However, they lost ground through the day and closed at $2.23.

The electricity company is trying to boost the value of its shares which have consistently traded below the $2.50 price the Government sold them at in May.

Among other stocks, Summerset Group gained 2 cents to $2.08 after the retirement village operator said its third-quarter sales jumped 19%, boosted by it building more apartments.

Summerset chief executive Norah Barlow says her company plans to build more apartments.

She says construction is planned at another seven sites.