The New Zealand and Australian dollars declined against their U.S. counterpart on Wednesday, after the release of downbeat economic reports from New Zealand and Australia and as Tuesday’s strong U.S. data continued to support the greenback.
NZD/USD dropped 0.51% to trade at 0.6777.
Statistics New Zealand reported on Wednesday that the producer price index input declined by 1.0% in the first quarter, disappointing expectations for a 0.3% rise, after a 1.2% drop in the three months to December.
PPI output slipped 0.2% in the last quarter, compared to expectations for a 0.4% gain, after a 0.8% decline in the fourth quarter of 2015.
AUD/USD slid 0.76% to 0.7271, re-approaching Monday’s two-month lows of 0.7232.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics said the wage price index increased by 0.4% in the first quarter, below expectations for a 0.5% gain and after a 0.5% rise in the previous quarter.
Meanwhile, the greenback remained supported after a string of upbeat U.S. economic reports on Tuesday boosted expectations for an upcoming rate hike by the Federal Reserve.
The U.S. Commerce Department said that consumer prices rose 0.4% in April, compared to expectations for a 0.3% gain. Year-over-year, consumer prices were 1.1% higher last month.
A separate report showed that U.S. housing starts rose 6.6% to 1.172 million units in April, compared to expectations for an increase to 1.127 million units.
Data also showed that U.S. industrial production increased by 0.7% last month, its largest gain since November 2014 and better than expectations for a gain of 0.3%.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was up 0.24% at 94.78, just off Friday’s three-week high of 94.84.