Wednesday 8th July 2015
In today’s report I’ll look at the latest developments in Greece, the effect of today’s Budget statement on Sterling, and also why the Pound/Euro rate has dropped to €1.39.
Pound/Euro drops to €1.39
Since the start of the week, we’ve seen GBP/EUR exchange rates drop from €1.42 to €1.39 today. There are several factors affecting the Sterling/Euro cross at the moment, and after a quick look at the chart I’ll address each one in turn.
What has caused Pound/Euro rates to fall?
Sterling had been performing very well recently, rising on the back of some better economic numbers in recent months and the returning of a majority Conservative administration in May’s general elections. The Pound had strengthened as a result, however now seems to be on the back foot. Here is my take on why Sterling has weakened off today.
Greek deal – The Greek situation seems to be coming to a head, with Greece set to submit fresh proposals on Thursday, EU ministers meeting on Saturday to discuss, and a decision on Sunday before a looming deadline for Greece to make a €3bn payment to the IMF. This could well be the last chance for Greece, and many sources are optimistic a deal will finally be done. The uncertainty of the last few months had largely already been priced into the Euro, and so the single currency is starting to regain some strength on the possibility of a resolution.
UK Budget – today George Osborne delivered his first conservative majority budget. The Pound had weakened this morning, and while there were some very positive things announced, in general it was a budget of austerity, and the fact that they are looking to go harder on austerity and start reducing overall debt soon bodes ill for the immediate outlook for the Pound.UK growth figures have been revised down, House prices are rocketing due to low supply, and this means that while the UK economy is performing very well, it’s not as good as some had hoped several months ago. This has taken the steam out of the Pound.
Flight to safety – there are real problems in China right now, with the stock markets there in free fall. Investors are wary of any uncertainty, and this combined with Greece and very low commodity prices means investors are placing their funds in ‘safe haven’ currencies like the US Dollar, Japanese Yen and Swiss Franc. The Pound has lost out as people move their funds to safer places riding out the global economic uncertainty.
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