There was little major movement from the dollar in the last 24 hours, as the currency steadied ahead of the holidays.

This morning the dollar stood at 1.7375 to the pound and was at 1.1879 against the euro.

Transport strikes in New York brought the city grinding to a halt, with some speculating this had an impact on "thin" trading, but the real focus ahead of 2006 are the prospects for the Federal Reserve.

Expectations are that more rate hikes might be sustained by the current economic trajectory, particularly after encouraging data from the US in the last two weeks.

On Wednesday Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond president Jeffrey Lacker urged vigilance on inflation, insisting that the Fed would need to "respond vigorously" to any signs of escalation.
However, despite the continuing positive prospects for the economy, most analysts are waiting for the expected slowdown to materialise and with it a shift in interest rate policy from the Fed.