The Election Starting To Take Centre Stage

2 April, 2015

Simon Eastman

Yesterday’s trade was ruled by investor sentiment and sterling lost out despite a positive start to UK ecostats.

The month kicked off with a raft Markit manufacturing data with releases from across Europe, the UK and the US with all but the US beating expectations. The UK and EU both posted decent figures with the EU number posting its best in 10 months. This helped the euro gain some momentum as it rallied against the pound.

This was against logic if following just the data releases as the UK’s figure was the highest of all released, but this was down to investor sentiment and their clear concern over the upcoming elections. With recent polls show we could be heading for a hung parliament, as we saw last time, but with a wider range of coalition options on the cards the outcome is more uncertain and as such investors are jittery.

On Thursday we will see a 7 way political debate live on television where the leaders of the main parties vie for your votes whilst trying to discredit their opponents, but will also highlight the political uncertainty ahead for Great Britain and will almost certainly lead to further volatility for the pound. The fact there are seven parties involved in the debate is a concern in itself as it highlights how fragmented UK politics has becomes and will only fuel concerns within investors in the run up to the general election on May 7th.

Today we have further PMI data for the UK, this time construction along with US employment data, Canadian import/export figures and the European Central Bank’s policy meeting all which could affect exchange rates. With investors cautious over sterling, even a strong stat could have little effect again though so buyers beware, if you have a currency purchase to make in the coming days or weeks, timing will be everything so ensure you stay in touch with your CI consultant and possibly look to trade sooner rather than later.