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Upbeat retail sales and Brexit optimism boost the Pound

business-articlesUpbeat retail sales and Brexit optimism boost the Pound
The pound enjoyed strong support yesterday, being boosted by both upbeat domestic data and efforts to prevent a no-deal Brexit.

Sterling appears to have carried this momentum through to today’s session, with GBP/EUR climbing  to €1.0926, GBP/USD buoyed at $1.2123 and GBP/CAD creeping up to C$1.6131. GBP/AUD and GBP/NZD have stabilised at AU$1.7868 and NZ$1.8840 respectively.

The publication of the latest US consumer sentiment index may place some pressure on USD exchange rates today.

What’s been happening?

The pound got off to a healthy start on Thursday, as markets cheered the release of the UK’s latest retail sales figures.

An expansion in sales growth took GBP investors by surprise yesterday, with Sterling rallying in response as the report decreased the odds of another contraction in UK growth in the third quarter.

These gains were then reinforced through the session by the news that Labour and other parties opposed to a no-deal Brexit had begun their bid to prevent the UK from crashing out of the EU without a deal.

Driving broad losses in the euro yesterday were expectations for a ‘significant’ monetary easing package from the European Central Bank (ECB).

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, ECB rate-setting committee member Olli Rehn hinted the bank’s stimulus measures could exceed expectations when they are announced next month.

Meanwhile, trade in the US dollar was mixed on Thursday, with renewed trade tensions between the US and China offsetting the publication of some stronger-than-expected domestic retail sales figures for July.

What’s coming up?

Looking ahead, a relatively quiet day for data puts the focus on the latest US consumer sentiment index.
Another fall in sentiment this month could see the US dollar move lower.

If the Eurozone’s trade surplus shrank in June the euro could be pressured lower.

Finally, in the absence of any noteworthy UK economic data, UK politics will return as the main catalyst of pound movement.
Philip McHugh

Philip McHugh

Joining the corporate trading desk in 2007, Phil now over sees all of Currencies Direct’s corporate dealing activity. Having gained experience working with hundreds of businesses to optimise international payments processes and execute comprehensive risk management strategies, Phil currently works with a portfolio of corporate clients whilst managing Currencies Direct’s overall market exposure

Phil has FCA approval and has completed the Certificate in International Treasury Management (CertiTM)

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