Sterling Remains Weak

17 April, 2019

Simon Eastman

Even with the Easter break in Parliament, the pound still can’t shake the doldrums it finds itself in, despite some fairly good jobs data.

UK unemployment held at 3.9 percent, some of the lowest levels seen in years, as the rate of people within the UK without jobs continues to decrease. Average earnings also came in as forecast but the actual claimant count, those claiming jobseekers allowance, came in 8000 higher than anticipated above the expected 20,000 claims for March.

That said, the pound actually made some stunted gains against the single currency and greenback, although trading remained in a tight range. The ZEW EU economic sentiment survey stopped the pound’s rally from ever being much more than two dozen pips as it came in higher than expected, but the pound’s rally was seemingly always going to be short-lived.

With it all quiet on the Brexit front for the Easter break, the Labour leader still managed to put the boot in, with reports he commented that “no agreement had been made with the Government on a customs union with the EU”, suggesting talks between them had stalled, although these comments were later denied. The upshot for sterling was a half-cent drop for the pound against the euro and the US dollar.

Today we have UK inflation readings, which is expected to increase back up to the 2 percent Bank of England target, followed by EU inflation and trade balance ahead of Canadian inflation after lunch. Finally, we hear from BoE Governor Mark Carney at 2 pm, which is always likely to throw up some curve balls for the pound amidst the Brexit ongoings. With that in mind, speak to one of our currency consultants today to discuss any upcoming requirements you might have.