SYDNEY/WELLINGTON, Sept 13 (Reuters) - The Australian and New Zealand dollar held near multi-week highs on Thursday, ahead of a U.S. Federal Reserve's policy announcement which may propel the commodity currencies to new peaks. New Zealand dollar edges up to $0.8210, staying in reach of a five-month high of $0.8237 hit in offshore trade. Versus a currency basket , the kiwi pokes up to a three-week high. Kiwi offers little reaction to the Reserve Bank of New Zealand's widely expected decision to hold interest rates at 2.5 percent, though outgoing Governor Allan Bollard said that the strong currency undermined export earnings. Focus on whether kiwi can make a sustained break above $0.8224, the August peak, would pave the way for more gains. Traders suspect offers above $0.8230 will limit any upside in the near term. Aussie at $1.0481, having powered up to a three-week high of $1.0507 overnight. Traders say Aussie supported by funds selling USD across the board. Immediate resistance seen at $1.0500 where macro-fund sell orders have been sighted, ahead of Aug 23 high of $1.0546. Focus is on the U.S. Federal Reserve policy decision later in the day. Aussie, kiwi may get another lift if the central bank launches more quantitative easing to boost its economy. A Reuters poll shows economists see a 65 percent chance of Fed action later in the day. But with markets close to fully pricing in QE, Aussie and kiwi dollars are vulnerable to a sell-on-the-fact response. Antipodean currencies hold hefty gains against the yen with Aussie at 81.46 , having climbed to 81.83 offshore. It hit a one-month low below 80 yen last week. Likewise, the kiwi at 63.79 , near a peak of 64.13 on Wednesday and around two yen higher from last week's trough. Kiwi supported near a 2 1/2-month high versus the Aussie
, which trades at NZ$1.2750, near roughly NZ$1.2700 hit on Wednesday. New Zealand government bonds slip, pushing yields 2 basis points higher at the short end of the curve. Australian bond futures dip, with the three-year contract
off 0.05 points at 97.370, while the 10-year contract
eases 0.055 points to 96.860.
(Australia and New Zealand bureaux)
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