This is article is released weekdays under the heading Daily Fundamentals at 5pm EST on www.dailyfx.com

New Zealand Retail Sales unexpectedly fell in July, shrinking -0.5% and disappointing expectations of a 0.4% result. The previous month's result was also revised lower, showing sales fell -0.1% rather than grew by the same magnitude as was originally reported. The release reinforces last week's comments from Reserve Bank of New Zealand Governor Alan Bollard, who said the medium term outlook for retail spending remains weak as unemployment continues to rise. Indeed, the jobless rate hit a 9-year high of 6% in the second quarter and central bank expects it to surpass 7% by the end of next year. Bollard also linked continued turmoil in the labor market to the New Zealand Dollar, saying the stronger currency puts business profits under pressure and warning that If the exchange rate were to continue its recent appreciation...the sustainability of the present recovery will be brought into question.