NZ dollar down on inflation

The New Zealand dollar fell against the greenback today with local Consumers Price Index data showing inflation was lower than expected at 0.8 per cent.

The kiwi recently traded at US81.58c, down from US81.77c in the morning. On the Trade Weighted Index against major trading partners' currencies it was at 72.70 at 5pm, down from 73.01 at 8am.

Westpac market strategist Imre Speizer said the weaker than tipped inflation was a surprise to the markets.

"The kiwi dollar fell 40 basis points then recovered somewhat mid afternoon so the net loss is actually quite small," Speizer said.

"The market had started to price in more chances of an interest rate cut so they've now got about a 30 basis point cut priced in for around the middle of next year."

Reserve Bank of Australia meeting minutes that were expected to reveal details of the decision to cut rates recently disappointed the market with little surprising content and the aussie did not show much reaction.

"The big offshore event this week is going to be the European Union summit on Thursday and Friday, whether there will be a bailout for Spain that would send the kiwi up," Speizer said.

On the crosses the kiwi was at 79.44 Australian cents, down from A79.75c earlier. It fell to 62.90 euro cents from 63.14 euro cents earlier. The kiwi was at 50.74 pence, down from 50.86 pence. Against the Japanese yen it eased to 64.28 yen from 64.33 yen earlier.

Speizer expected the kiwi to trade between US8.85c and US81.90c overnight with a soft outlook overall.