There was little respite to the downward pressure on natural resources, with the broadly-based Bloomberg commodities index coming close to its lowest level since 1999. As in the previous week, there was no consistency in the performance of the commodity-oriented currencies. 

The Canadian dollar fell further than the Aussie and the NZ dollar did relatively well. A problem for all of them was the US Federal Reserve's long-awaited decision to raise the target for its benchmark interest rate from 0-0.25% to 0.25-0.5%. It reinforced expectations that US rates will continue to move higher over the next 12 months, narrowing the gap with returns available elsewhere.

Yet the Kiwi received help along the way, first from a 1.9% rise in milk prices and then from the NZ finance minister, who was upbeat about the economic outlook. The Kiwi had to concede half a cent to the US dollar but it strengthened by a cent and a half against sterling.