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  • NZD/USD heads back towards the day’s highs on a volatile start to the week.
  • Vaccine hopes keep the bid alive, but positioning is overbought and year-end squaring up could be on the cards.

NZD/USD has rallied since London’s mid-morning dealing as the US dollar flips on its head, shedding all of its gains for the day by the final hour of Wall Street. 

At the time of writing, NZD/USD is trading at below water by 0.37% but has climbed some 1.6% from its lows of the day, travelling between 0.7002 and 0.7123. 

NZD/USD burst through low volume nodes in late morning in the New York session from 0.7062 and through the session’s point of control at 0.7090 to the current level. 

A number of factors are in play, namely, Brexit, COVID and US stimulus. 

The US dollar had picked up a safe haven bid at the start of the day, hitting a 10-day high, as a fast-spreading new coronavirus strain prevalent in Britain prompted investors to seek safety in the greenback.

Vaccine optimism among the sector’s leaders

The US dollar then turned lower on the day in thinner holiday season trading volumes while various reports, citing microbiologists and members of the biotechnology sector, communicated their optimistic views on vaccines.

”It’s a real warning that we need to pay closer attention,” said Jesse Bloom yesterday, an evolutionary biologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.

“Certainly these mutations are going to spread, and, definitely, the scientific community — we need to monitor these mutations and we need to characterize which ones have effects.”

However, “No one should worry that there is going to be a single catastrophic mutation that suddenly renders all immunity and antibodies useless,” Dr Bloom argued.

“The fact is that you have a thousand big guns pointed at the virus,” said Kartik Chandran, a virologist at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

“No matter how the virus twists and weaves, it’s not that easy to find a genetic solution that can really combat all these different antibody specificities, not to mention the other arms of the immune response.”


Biontech CEO: Vaccine works with the new British mutation

Domestically, the bird had been performing well last week following an upbeat global sentiment paired with a rebound in Gross Domestic Produce that beat expectation for the third quarter, Q3.

Q3 growth inched above zero (+0.4%) in the year-on-year gauge with a very solid 14.0% quarter-on-quarter.

Therefore, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand is unlikely to cut rates so soon and for that, the bird was supported. 

In the same vein, the currency was buoyed by comments from the Finance Minister Grant Robertson’s which pointed to a relaxed stance on the bird’s recent appreciation.

However, the bird is technically overbought in positioning data as net longs vs USD were at 17% of open interest as of last week, according to CFTC data. This may lead to some positing squaring in the final weeks of the year.