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SYDNEY/WELLINGTON: The Australian dollar eased against the greenback on Monday as a spike in Covid-19 cases in Sydney raised the prospect of an extended lockdown, while the New Zealand dollar weakened ahead of data later in the week expected to show milder inflation.

The Aussie was trading 0.31% lower at $0.7468, losing some of the ground recovered by the close on Friday, after it had dropped to a seven-month low of $0.7410 earlier that day.

The kiwi dollar was 0.26% lower at $0.6978, losing some of the ground it had recovered by the close on Friday after striking a trough of $0.6923, its lowest since June 18, earlier that day. Bonds were mainly higher on Monday, with New Zealand yields falling two basis points at the short end of the curve, while remaining either unchanged or one basis point lower at the longer-end.

Australian 10-year yields moved two and a half basis points lower to 1.325%. The more liquid 10-year future instrument moved 4 ticks higher to 98.675, lowering its yield to 1.33%. “The market seems to be reassessing the extent to which the global economic recovery can continue, particularly with the spread of the Delta variant,” ANZ strategists said.

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