THE TAKEAWAY: Australian homebuilding and investment improved while New Zealand business confidence ticked higher > Japanese retail sales slumped yet again > AUD, NZD, JPY little moved
The Japanese yen was little changed versus the dollar as sales at large retail stores in Japan declined 3.2 percent in October marking the sixth consecutive month of retail sales declines. The yen has declined in value versus its major counterparts over the last few months as political opposition leader Abe, who is favored to take power next month, has called for aggressive monetary easing in an attempt to devalue their currency and put an end to deflation.
Meanwhile, in Australia, new home sales received a 3.4 percent boost in October and private capital expenditures also increased by 2.8 percent signaling confidence among homebuilders, homeowners, and private business alike that markets may be projecting growth in the subsequent months ahead. The higher yielding Australian dollar was little moved on the data though today’s risk-on market sentiment prompted Forex traders to bid the currency moderately higher, yet failed to make a new high.
The New Zealand dollar ticked slightly higher as both business confidence and the economic activity outlook figures improved to 26.4 and 31.6 in November, up from 17.2 and 25.5 the prior month. Like the Australian dollar, Forex markets bought the Kiwi over the last 24 hours of trading alongside risk-on sentiment, though did not make new highs.
USD/JPY, Daily Chart
AUD/USD, 15 Minute Chart
NZD/USD, 1 Hour Chart