The New Zealand dollar was little changed in local trading as investors await a slew of US economic data and the Federal Reserve's latest update on monetary policy.

The kiwi traded at 80.78 US cents at 5pm in Wellington from 80.75 cents at 8am and 80.84 cents on Friday in New York. The trade-weighted index was 75.93 from 76.02 last week.

Federal Open Market Committee members will review US monetary policy in a two-day meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday, as they weigh up the recovery of the world's biggest economy and whether to start unwinding their stimulus.

Chairman Ben Bernanke has previously said the bank may start slowing its pace of monthly asset purchases if things continue to improve.

That means US employment figures, second-quarter growth and a manufacturing survey this week will be keenly watched by the market.

"We expect the US data will be a bit stronger than what the market does, and overall that should support the US dollar," said Peter Dragicevich, currency strategist at Commonwealth Bank of Australia in Sydney.

"The kiwi should drift a little lower this week."

A BusinessDesk survey of 10 traders and strategists predicts the local currency may trade between 78.60 US cents and 82.30 cents this week. Seven expect the New Zealand dollar to rise and three are picking a fall.

The NZ currency traded at 60.83 euro cents from 60.87 cents last week. It fell to 79.02 yen from 79.45 yen and traded at 87.27 Australian cents from 87.22 cents.

 

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