The Pound is gaining on rising speculation that the Bank of England will refrain from engaging in further quantitative easing.
Sterling / Euro and US Dollar exchange rates
The Pound gained for a fourth straight day against the U.S Dollar, rising through 1.5850, after a report yesterday showed that UK house prices increased this month, adding to recent signs that the economy is recovering from its fourth quarter slump. The UK currency also made widespread gains against the lower-yielding currencies, but again struggled to sustain any momentum versus the commodity driven currencies like the Australian Dollar and South African Rand.
Sterling rose to a three-month high against the Yen, amid speculation that the Bank of England minutes this week will show that the decision to extend quantitative easing measures this month wasn’t unanimous, making more QE less likely. The Pound did drop under 1.20 versus the Euro, however, as EU officials moved a step closer towards an agreement on a second financial aid package for Greece.
The Euro strengthened against the Yen and the U.S Dollar over night, after EU finance ministers agreed to award Greece a second bailout package to ward off the threat of a hard default next month. The Luxembourg Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker said the deal includes a 53.5% writedown for investors in Greek bonds.
The Australian Dollar weakened against the majors, after the Reserve Bank of Australia released the minutes of February’s meeting and said there is scope to continue cutting interest rates, despite keeping them unchanged this month for the first month in three. Although there was a knee-jerk positive reaction for the Euro following the announcement, the outcome was largely factored into the market and the Euro remained broadly unchanged against the Pound.
The Pound is gaining on rising speculation that the Bank of England will refrain from engaging in further quantitative easing this year and the potential for a pause on bond purchases is giving some support to Sterling. Asking prices for property in London rose towards a record high in February, helping push values up by the most in a decade nationally.
U.K 09:30 – PS Net Borrowing (January)
EU 15:00 – EC Flash Consumer Confidence (February)
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