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Based out of Auckland, New Zealand, we bring an institutional trading experience to the retail market.
Mark O' Donnell
 · 
Research Analyst
August 12, 2020
 · 

New Zealand Dollar plunges, S&P500 surges

NZD/USD plunges on Lockdown, S&P500 surges

The New Zealand dollar has fallen against the US Dollar as New Zealand records new community transmitted cases since the last time 102 days ago.

New Zealand Dollar pushing down against the U.S Dollar as lockdown bites

After a rally in risk-on currencies, the New Zealand dollar has fallen over 0.75% over the past two days from its high from 0.6175 as the largest city in the country, Auckland, was put into a mandatory level 3 lockdown for three days. For reference, New Zealand uses a 4 level system, with four being the most severe of lockdowns imposing a mandatory stay at home order for all citizens, with only essential workers such as nurses and doctors allowed to work.

New Zealand citizens gearing up for another lockdown

Level 3 is less severe; however, it still imposes mandatory work from home orders if it is possible to do so. Schools and restaurants are closed. However, takeaways are allowed. Furthermore, only gatherings of 10 are permitted, with police roadblocks around the Auckland area to catch people going in/out of the city.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern urges citizens not to panic and panic buy at the supermarkets. However, queues have been seen stretching out the door at many supermarket chains, with police being required to be present to control the crowd of shoppers.

Queues at the supermarket as shoppers react to the late night bombshell from Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

New Zealand markets sell-off may be reactionary

In terms of the New Zealand dollar and New Zealand equities, this sell-off may be purely reactionary. New Zealand is doing far better than essentially every other country, including its bigger brother Australia. This may be a good time for bulls to enter the market. As we’ve seen with many other securities as of late, the market is quick to pounce on a beaten asset for the rebound.

S&P 500 and NASDAQ soldiering forward

Meanwhile, in the United States, we see the market edge higher, with the NASDAQ and Dow Jones climbing back to their all-time highs on useful US inflation data. However, the outperformer was the SP500 with cyclical assets such as energy stocks help push the index past its all-time highs.

S&P 500 pushes into positive territory year to date

The S&P 500 broke the 3,386 level, finishing the US trading session just under 3390, an all-time high.

This is a familiar picture with investors and traders who have been following the markets for the past couple of months – the market rallies on good news regardless of the relevancy, with the market discounting the bad news citing Fed liquidity propping up assets. Regardless, the rally in equities has been astounding, proving the wrong unbelievers of the “V-shape” recovery.

Barry Jones, manager at the James Investment research, stated that the rally in the equity markets has been “absolutely amazing” and that the market has “done the V-shape recovery that the economy has not” with the “stock market [plowing] right ahead.”

Futures pulled back slightly at the end of the US session, most likely gearing up for the retail sales figure this Friday. A better than expected result will most likely see the NASDAQ push up above its record high of 11,286 and solidifying the S&P 500’s push above its all-time high.

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