The Australian and New Zealand dollars moved lower against their U.S. counterpart on Tuesday, after the release of a flurry of data from both countries and the Reserve Bank of Australia left interest rates unchanged.
AUD/USD slid 0.31% to 0.7516, off the previous session’s one-and-a-half week highs of 0.7544.
In a widely expected move, the RBA held its benchmark interest rate at 1.75% at the conclusion of its policy meeting on Tuesday. However, RBA Governor Glenn Stevens said the central bank remained willing to act if necessary, fuelling speculation over a rate cut in the near future.
Also Tuesday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said that retail sales rose 0.2% in May, compared to expectations for a 0.3% gain. Retail sales inched up 0.1% in April, whose figure was revised from a previously estimated 0.2% increase.
A separate report showed that Australia’s trade deficit widened to A$2.218 billion (£1.27 billion) in May from A$1.785 billion (£1.02 billion) in April, whose figure was revised from a previously estimated deficit of A$1.579 billion (£0.90 billion). Analysts had expected the trade deficit to narrow to A$1.500 billion (£0.86 billion) in May.