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Weekly roundup: Pound rises as UK avoids new Covid restrictions

currency-newsWeekly roundup: Pound rises as UK avoids new Covid restrictions
The pound edged higher at the start of last week’s trade amid rumours that the UK government would not introduce further Covid restrictions ahead of the new year. However, thin trading conditions amid the replacement bank holidays for Christmas Day and Boxing Day meant movement was limited.

As trade began to pick up, Sterling strengthened in earnest. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that he would hold off imposing new Covid measures. GBP investors were cheered by the news, and the pound rose.

The pound then continued to climb despite rising Covid cases, thanks to comments from NHS Providers CEO Chris Hopson. Hopson said that between 25% and 30% of Covid hospitalisations in the UK are ‘incidental cases’, meaning that Covid was not the reason for their admittance to hospital.

Turning to this week’s trade, Omicron news could continue to drive most movement in Sterling. If the UK can avoid any further lockdown measures, GBP might climb higher.

In addition, expectations that the Bank of England (BoE) will raise rates yet again at next month’s meeting are also starting to lift the pound.

Investors will be looking ahead to the final results of the UK’s services PMI on Thursday. The flash report showed a sharp slowdown in service-sector activity. If the finalised PMI differs from the preliminary estimate, it could cause some 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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