Global equities rallied last week following Janet Yellen's comments suggesting that the pace of rate normalisation will be more gradual than some had anticipated. The S&P/ASX 200 added 1.1%, the S&P 500 rose 1.4%, the EURO STOXX 50 gained 1.8%, while the MSCI Emerging Markets Index jumped 4.5%. iShares MSCI BRIC ETF (IBK) was the top performing unleveraged equity ETF for the week, returning 2.3% in Australian dollar terms.
The Australian dollar gained over 3% on general US dollar weakness and higher commodity prices. The euro gained 0.6% and the pound added 1.6% against the US dollar. The Japanese yen also strengthened by 1.2%.