$A slightly lower in quiet trade

The Australian dollar is slightly lower in quiet trade with US markets closed for the Martin Luther King public holiday.

At 0700 AEDT on Tuesday, the local unit was trading at 82.06 US cents, down from 82.18 cents on Monday.

NAB head of research, UK/Europe Nick Parsons said traders were cautious ahead of the release of some key economic events this week.

"For the first time in well over a week, almost every currency is trading on the same big figure as it did 24 hours ago," he said.

"In part this is explained by the holiday in the United States which shut all markets there, but a general lack of fresh news and a very defensive mood ahead of Thursday's European Central Bank (ECB) Council meeting have left investors unwilling to commit fresh capital in potentially very volatile conditions."

The ECB is expected to announce new economic stimulus measure at the meeting.

During the local session on Tuesday traders, will be focusing on the release of Chinese industrial production and retail sales figures for December.

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