Disappointing Chinese data heavily weighed on the Australian dollar, pushing it closer to parity with New Zealand.
Aussie was mostly influenced by external factors rather than with the domestic situation, analysts say, and China was important because is was the key buyer of Australian resources.
This week the Aussie had been subject to both push and pull factors, with poor US economic data helping it rally against the greenback, but with bad news out of China applying plenty of downward pressure, says Citigroup currency strategist Todd Elmer.
The New Zealand dollar crept up against the Aussie, trading at AU$1.008 after 4pm AEST. Meanwhile, after rising to US76.5c at about 1am on Wednesday, the Aussie then dropped again and was hovering at around US76c by mid-afternoon.
The market had expected Chinese exports to gain 8.2 per cent in March, but an announcement this week instead showed a fall of 14.6.
China's GDP had grown 7 per cent in line with expectations, according to a further announcement on Wednesday, but other indicators including retail sales and industrial production had been weak.
Mr Elmer expected the local currency to begin trading in the US70c to 75c range, and warned it could drop below parity with the New Zealand dollar "sooner rather than later" as external factors will continue to weigh on it for a while.
Slower growth in China is likely to mean more pressure on Australian commodity prices.
The Aussie could drop below parity with the New Zealand dollar by the end of June, driven by a probable interest rate cut in Australia and possible rise across the ditch, as CBA currency analyst Joseph Capurso considers. The Chinese data issued Wednesday had only a small impact on Australia's currency, because its most important measure, GDP, had been unsurprising.
Economic data out of the US had made a greater contribution to the volatility in the Aussie.