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NZ dollar gains vs greenback ahead of poll

Rebecca Howard

The New Zealand dollar rose on Thursday ahead of the latest opinion poll, with just over a week until the election, and before a report on US inflation.

The kiwi dollar was trading at US72.54c as at 5pm in Wellington from US72.37c as at 8am and 72.87c late Wednesday.

Domestically traders were waiting to see if the latest 1News Colmar Brunton poll continues to show Labour ahead of National, in particular after this week's Newshub Reid Research poll showed the opposite.

Potential moves in the US dollar, however, could have a bigger impact if it looks like US President Donald Trump may get a tax deal through and if there is any tick up in US inflation.

"The market is absolutely watching the poll. It got hosed on the back of the Newshub one," with the kiwi pushing immediately higher, said Tim Kelleher, head of institutional foreign exchange sales at ASB Bank.

He said, however, if Mr Trump does get a tax deal through it would be US dollar positive and "if we get a tick up in CPI, that would certainly put the cat amongst the pigeons".

The kiwi was trading at A90.53c from A90.80c. Weak data out of China - including fixed-asset investment, factory output and retail sales - all weighed on the Aussie but a solid jobs report across the Tasman kept it firm.

Australia added 54,200 new jobs in August and the unemployment rate was unchanged at a seasonally adjusted 5.6 per cent in August.

The kiwi was at 80.03 yen from 80.26 yen and 4.7413 yuan from 4.7543 yuan. The kiwi traded at 61.00 euro cents from 60.81 cents and at 54.87 British pence from 54.76 pence.