Aust dollar slightly higher at noon

Local currency trading in a tight range ahead of China data, Fed minutes.

The Australian dollar is trading within a tight range ahead of the release of local and Chinese economic data and the minutes from the US Federal Reserve's last meeting.

At 1200 AEDT, the local unit was trading at 89.25 US cents, up from 89.19 cents on Tuesday.

The Australian dollar is consolidating its position on Wednesday in the absence of any market-moving announcements or events, research analyst Chris Tedder said.

But the market will be looking forward to data out of Australia and China on Thursday, along with the minutes from the US Federal Reserve's December meeting, when the central bank decided to begin tapering its bond buying program.

"The Australian dollar is treading water until the release of Australian retail sales and China's consumer price index data tomorrow," Mr Tedder said.

"At the same time we've got the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting minutes and other important events in the overnight session.

"That will shed light on the meeting where chairman Ben Bernanke elected to begin tapering.

"He seemed to suggest it was a big group decision and the market wants to see exactly what happened."

At 1200 AEDT, the March 10-year bond futures contract was trading at 95.745 (implying a yield of 4.255 per cent), up from 95.725 (4.275 per cent) on Tuesday.

The March three-year bond futures contract was at 96.970 (3.030 per cent), up from 96.960 (3.040 per cent).

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