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Australian dollar rides high

The Australian dollar is expected to record its seventh weekly gain against the US dollar amid the booming prices of metals and other commodities, and an Australian federal budget described as "growth-friendly".

This week, the value of the Australian dollar reached 77.93 US cents, and forecasters predict that given the current boom in the metals market, the dollar's value can only go higher.

The prices of metals including gold, silver, copper and zinc have shot up over the last 12 months, with some reaching record levels thanks to concerns over a shortage of supply and increased demand from fast-developing economies such as China.

This is all good news for Australia's export earnings, as the country is currently one of the world's biggest metal producers - particularly in gold, copper and zinc.

Commenting on the strong performance of the currency, Mizuho head of derivatives Joe Ivanovski said that both strong commodity prices and the recent announcement of the federal budget were having a powerful effect.

"All the planets are aligned again to push it up," he said.

"The risk of a further Reserve Bank of Australia rate hike was given further stimulation by the budget, and we also had commodities up and general US dollar softness."