Kiwis cheer moment of AUD parity

Ben McKay

For just a short while on Thursday morning, the New Zealand dollar went into uncharted territory - beyond parity with the Australian dollar.

"No one was awake but we Kiwis are claiming it," Kiwibank economist Jarrod Kerr told AAP.

The NZ dollar is enjoying sustained strength against the Australian dollar, valued at at least 95 cents for the past four months.

Volatilities in currency trading, reacting to huge government interventions from the coronavirus, produced the history-making moment.

And after a brief jump at 4:04am Thursday AEDT ahead of the line, the NZD has returned to sit at around 99 cents since.

"It was a very liquid time in the market," Kerr said.

"At 99 cents, there's definitely a chance of bouncing up to that parity and holding there.

"We do get periods where it comes close and then shies away.

"Another couple of confused days in markets that cause either strong buying or selling could push it again ... but it's a very big ask."

Not since the New Zealand dollar was floated in March 1985 has it been worth more than the Aussie equivalent.

While the Aussie and Kiwi dollars are engaged in a trans-Tasman fight for supremacy, both have lost huge ground to the US dollar as investors seek the safe haven of the greenback.

The retreat will assist both economies to recover much-needed confidence.

"Our currencies are very pro-growth and we're now in a situation which is dire for growth outlook," Mr Kerr said.

"We're getting hit. So we should and that's what we need."

As of 1pm AEDT, the New Zealand dollar was buying 98.63 Australian cents.