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By Sophia Rodrigues
     SYDNEY (MNI) - Following are the five key observations we made from
overseas trade indexes data for the fourth quarter published by Statistics New
Zealand on Thursday:
     --New Zealand's terms of trade rose 0.8% in Q4 to a new record high driven
mainly by export prices for meat which rose 7.5% due to a 12% rise in lamb
     --Total export prices rose 4.9%. Dairy was another key contributor to rise
in export prices mainly due to a 11% rise in butter prices. Since September
2016, prices for butter have risen 93%.
     --Total import prices rose 4.0%. Crude oil rose 22% and were at their
highest level since Q3 of 2015.
     --This was the fifth straight quarter of rise in terms of trade but the
latest gain was the smallest during this period. The best during this time was
the 5.8% rise in terms of trade in Q4 of 2016.
     --Export prices for services rose 2.9% while import prices rose 5.2%,
marking a fall in services terms of trade.
--MNI Sydney Bureau; tel: +61 2-9716-5467; email:
[TOPICS: MANDS$,M$A$$$,M$N$$$,MT$$$$]