Could we be experiencing the calm before the Storm?

19 February, 2020

Grace Rae

Following the stormy weather hitting the UK, the currency markets are seemingly doing ok, but could this be the calm before the storm?

Although Brexit trade talks are not due to begin until March, reports are already making headlines. Yesterday the BBC reported that the EU’s Chief negotiator for Brexit Michel Barnier stating the UK cannot have a Canada-Style deal which the Prime minister is trying to pursue.

Pressure is on now for the UK government to secure a deal by the 31st December deadline. Following the Cabinet reshuffle Sterling strengthen considerably closing the gap and offering our close to the best rates seen against its majors since the Brexit referendum began in 2016. This coupled with a weak euro at the moment has meant that the Pound has been able to advance of this and the move has provided a nice bit of relief for those with Sterling in hand looking to exchange their funds, whether it be towards their dream holiday home, foreign payments or general spending. Although be warned, once the trade talks take up in March, these current levels may be gone as quickly as they arrived. If talks do not go smoothly (as various reports are suggesting both sides are ready to battle over fishing rights) it’s likely the Pound will be the one to suffer in the interim.

Yesterday we saw rates improve over the course of the day following better than anticipated Employment data for the UK and although Average Earnings for the three months leading to December came in just shy of expectations, this hadn’t caused much of an impact on the rates. Today we can expect more data for the UK in the form of Consumer, Retail and Producer Price Index all out first thing at 09:30, and in the afternoon the US and Canada also post their figures at 13:30.

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