It was a fraught week for natural resources. Oil and iron ore prices were at, or close to, multi-year lows and everything connected to them was under pressure, including share prices and currencies. Not all of the commodity-related currencies were affected equally: Notably, the Australian and NZ dollars headed in opposite directions, the Aussie falling by -2.3% and the Kiwi strengthening by 0.8% against sterling.
The Kiwi's get out of jail card was the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, which cut its benchmark Official Cash Rate from 2.75% to 2.5%. Normally such a move would send the currency south, on account of the lower return it offered. On this occasion, however, not only had the cut been quite widely expected but the RBNZ also said that a further reduction is unlikely. The result was a net gain of half a US cent and the Kiwi strengthened by a cent and three quarters against sterling