Foreign Exchange for Business

If you buy and sell internationally, ASB's Global Markets team can help your business manage changes in exchange rates.

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Great reasons to choose us

  • Find the foreign exchange risk-management products best suited to your business
  • Make foreign currency payments online at your convenience
  • Access foreign exchange market insights from ASB’s economists
  • Options to lock in exchange rates and payment dates
  • Hold funds in foreign currency ready for payment or conversion
  • Access to specialists for your personal and business needs

Why manage foreign exchange rate risk?

If you trade overseas, it's important to remember that even small changes in an exchange rate can have a big impact on your profitability. That's because the difference in the total value of your deal comes out of your margin.

For example, imagine you're shipping $100,000 of goods overseas, at a 20% margin, so $20,000 profit. If the exchange rate drops 5%, you'll only receive $95,000. But your costs are locked in, so that $5,000 loss comes out of your margin. Instead of making $20,000 you only make $15,000. That 5% change cost you 25% of your profit.

Fortunately, there are lots of ways we can help you manage your exchange rate risk whether you're importing, exporting, or both.

As your business grows and becomes more complex, we can use more advanced tools to help manage your exchange rate risk. Many of these tools are unnecessary for small businesses, but perfect for large businesses. Talk to us today so we can suggest the best tools for your business' needs.

How can we help manage your foreign exchange rate risk?

Foreign Currency Accounts

If you regularly make and receive overseas payments, a Foreign Currency Account can make life simpler. 

It lets you hold funds in your overseas currency, and make and receive payments without converting them first. It saves you exchange rate fees, and helps you manage your costs when exchange rates change. 

Topping up your account or converting funds to New Zealand dollars is as simple as making an online fund transfer using our Financial Markets Online module. We quote a rate for conversion which you can accept or decline.

Foreign Currency Term Deposits

If you're holding foreign currency for a future requirement, depending on the currency you can park the funds in an ASB Foreign Currency term deposit. You earn interest on the funds, and usually at a higher rate than in a standard Foreign Currency Account. 

Forward Exchange Contracts

Forward Exchange Contracts (FECs) let you lock in a rate for a future transaction. You choose the date and amount, and we provide the exchange rate. You can then proceed with certainty, knowing that your rate is locked in and can’t be affected by exchange rate changes.

Remember, the FEC is locked in. You have to proceed with the deal even if the exchange rate on the day is better than your agreed rate.

We may agree to terminate an FEC prior to the maturity date, but we are not required to do so. Early termination may result in you suffering a loss depending on the prevailing exchange rate.

Foreign Exchange Options

An alternative to a locked in Forward Exchange Contract (FEC) is a Foreign Exchange Option (FX Option). Like an FEC, you choose a date, a currency and an amount, and we set an agreed exchange rate, sometimes called a 'strike rate'.

But unlike an FEC, an FX Option gives you the best of both worlds. On the transaction date you can choose to keep your agreed exchange rate, or back out of the deal if the exchange rate moves in your favour.

The only difference is that you pay a non-refundable premium upfront for an FX Option – this can be especially useful in volatile markets.

Foreign Exchange Orders

A Foreign Exchange Order (FX Order) lets you create an automated deal at an exchange rate and amount to suit you. When the rate reaches your chosen level, we automatically execute your order.

We monitor FX Orders from market opening on Monday morning NZT to Friday afternoon New York time.

Call Level

If you'd prefer to confirm your currency deal before it happens, a Call Level is right for you. You set your target exchange rate, and we monitor the markets. When the exchange rate hits your target, we confirm your order with you via phone or email before executing it.

Have you tried our helpful online banking tools?

FastNet Business internet banking

FastNet Business internet banking is a powerful online banking platform that allows your business partners access to your ASB accounts. You decide what each person can see and do, so you can delegate your banking tasks without losing control.

FastNet Business International

From making payments in multiple currencies to managing your letters of credit, FastNet Business International is the perfect module for international traders.

Access market updates with our Economic Reports

Markets Monthly

An up-to-date overview of the previous month's themes in global financial markets. It contains key central bank decisions and meaningful insights into price movements.

Economic Weekly

This highly popular report recalls key domestic and international developments from the previous week, and alerts you to those expected in the week ahead.

Monthly Calendar

Our team of economists can keep you updated on the trends, financial news and projections that affect you most.

See how else we could help

Growing your business internationally

Aiming to increase your business' international reach? ASB's international business experts understand the regulatory requirements of offshore markets.

Looking to import

Spotted a market gap that needs filling? If you're considering importing, ASB's international business experts can help with services like foreign exchange management and payment guarantees.

Get started with exporting

Time to take your product or services to the world? ASB provides expert advice alongside the right financial tools and online solutions to make exporting easier.

Next steps

Enquire now

Email the Global Markets team below.

Email us

Call us

We're here to help, 8.00am to 5.00pm NZT, Monday to Friday.

0800 806 280

+64 9 302 3055

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ASB's terms apply.

ASB is the issuer of the products mentioned above.

International business Foreign Exchange for business – Tools to manage risk | ASB