The attached note takes a look at the outlook for the Australian dollar. The key points are as follows:
- In the absence of significant additional fiscal stimulus soon, further RBA monetary easing both in the form of rate cuts and quantitative easing point to more downside for the $A.
- However, there is good reason to believe we may be close to the low in the $A (or have already seen it): it has already had a large fall; it is just below fair value; the global economic cycle is likely to turn up next year; sentiment towards the $A is very negative; and the current account is in surplus.
- Our base case remains for the $A to fall to $US0.65 in the months ahead as the RBA eases further, but at the end of 2020 it’s likely to be stuck around $US0.65-70
For a long time, we have been bearish on the Australian dollar, seeing a fall into the high $US0.60s and revising this to around $US0.65 in May. In early October it fell to a low of $US0.6671. While negatives remain significant for the $A there is good reason to believe that we are close to the low or may have already seen it. This note looks at the main issues.
The negatives for the $A are well known
The big negative for the Australian dollar is that growth is weaker in Australia and spare capacity is much higher than in the US. For example, labour market underutilisation is 13.8% in Australia versus just 7% in the US, on the latest available data real growth in Australia is running at 1.4% year on year compared to 2% in the US and that translates to per capita GDP growth of -0.2% in Australia compared to 1.4% in the US. And the drag on growth from the housing downturn, weak consumer spending and the drought is likely to keep growth relatively weak in Australia for the next six months or so.
Source: Bloomberg, AMP Capital