Busy week for the UK and global data releases

19 March, 2018

Simon Eastman

Last week was fairly quiet for the pound, with little data releases of note for investors to move on, while no further news from the Brexit negotiations, meant rates were range bound for most of the week. Sterling found some strength on Thursday showing some gains, ending the week in the 1.13’s against the euro and pushing up towards the key 1.4 level against the USD.

Little occurred over the weekend to change sentiment so as Asian markets opened rates stayed fairly in line with where they finished up on Friday ahead of what is due to be a very busy week for the UK and global data releases.

Monday kicks off a two-day G20 meeting while on the data front it’s actually pretty quiet apart from EU trade balance and a speech by one of the Fed members ahead of their interest rate-setting meeting later in the week. Overnight Monday the Reserve Bank of Australia releases the minutes from their most recent meeting where rates were held, which should give an insight into their future policy which has of late kept the dollar weak.

Tuesday we have the UK inflation readings which will give clues as to whether the Bank of England may leave the door open to another interest rate rise later in the week, which has been speculated about recently. The German ZEW economic sentiment statement follows closely and can lead to euro movement, as an insight into the overall economic health of the EU’s largest economy.

Wednesday is another key day for the UK with unemployment figures and average earnings data out in the morning, plus public sector net borrowing. The real action comes after the close of trade when the much anticipated Fed interest rate decision comes and we’ll see whether the forecasts for another rate hike come to light or not, followed a couple of hours later by the RBNZ who also announce their current interest rate-setting decision. Overnight Australia release their unemployment figures.

Thursday is a busy one with German, EU and US Markit manufacturing and services PMI, plus UK retail sales all ahead of the Bank of England rate-setting meeting. Speculation over another interest rate decision has been talked of recently so could we be in for a surprise rate hike, and if we do have one, will it be sterling negative like the last one? We’ll have the rate decision, statement and minutes all released at midday.

The week ends with the UK quarterly bulletin from Mark Carney and Canadian retail sales and inflation readings.

Lots to go on this week, especially for the UK so anyone looking to send money overseas in the coming weeks should get in touch with one of the team asap to discuss the measures available to make the most of your pound, like Limit and Stop Loss Orders, plus Forward Contracts.