Sterling had risen this morning following better than expected average earnings. This came in slightly above forecast, but crucially the number is not below the inflation figure of 2.3%. Regular readers will know that rising inflation may lead to an interest rate rise in the UK, which in turn would strengthen the Pound against other currencies. Inflation is above the 2% target which under normal conditions would mean the BoE raising rates. However, there were concerns that if wage growth did not keep pace with inflation, then the BoE would not be able to act.
This mornings figures mean there is a slightly higher chance of a BoE rate hike, and that’s why the Pound has risen slightly. The spike was limited however, reinforcing my view that I think for the moment Sterling has peaked and is unlikely rise much further against other currencies. The Bank of England are unlikely to act in the short term, as they want to keep the ship steady as we enter EU negotiations. Raising rates could slow consumer spending, and that’s much of what has been driving the economy along of late, and keeping the Pound supported at the same time. It will be interesting to hear what BoE governor Mark Carney has to say in his speech shortly. A dovish tone could send the Pound lower again, and he does have a habit of tending to talk Sterling down.
Let’s take a quick look at how Sterling is performing against the main currencies that we trade; EUR, USD, CAD, AUD & NZD. Our rates of exchange are extremely competitive, so if you need to make a currency transfer get in touch today for a free quote to compare with your bank or existing broker, and see how much you could save.
Sterling rose against the Euro yesterday afternoon getting close to €1.18 overnight. There weren’t any eco-stats that caused the move, and the gains were attributed to a tweet by President Trump in which he warned that “North Korea is looking for trouble”. The playground antics of the worlds’ most powerful man caused some concern amongst investors and we saw save haven flows with market participants moving out of the Euro and USD into Sterling, causing the rise. GBP/EUR currently sits in the mid to high €1.17’s, only a few percent from the best since last summer. Looking for the best Euro rates? Get a GBP/EUR quote.
Pound/Dollar rates currently sit around the $1.25 level which is only a cent below the best it’s been in 6 months. It was weakness in the USD that pushed rates higher due to the tweet I’ve mentioned above. Trump is giving a speech at 11am this morning any any surprise comments could move the USD further. This afternoon we have a Budget statement and trade balance data. The general feeling is that if the USA raise interest rates a few more times this year then the Dollar should strengthen pulling rates back towards the $1.20 level. Given we’re close to a 6 month high on GBP/USD, those that need to buy dollars may wish to consider fixing a rate while it’s better than it has been. Get a GBP/USD quote.
GBP/CAD is also looking pretty good, and the rate is 5% higher than back in January. Part of the reason is a strengthening Pound now that the Brexit process has started. The Canadian Dollar is also weak due to low oil prices. Today could be important for how the rate moves sa we have an interest rate statement (expected to be left at 0.5%) along with a policy report and press conference. If you need to buy or sell Canadian Dollars then contact us today for a free quote. Get a GBP/CAD quote.
GBP/AUD has performed very well over the last 4 weeks, rising 5% from $1.59 to $1.6650. This is all to do with Sterling. If you look at AUD/EUR for example the rate has barely moved over the last month. The Pound had been severely punished since the referendum but it now seems that all the bad news is priced in, and the recent gains are because the UK economy is performing well. Watch for how China performs as because Australia exports so much Iron ore to China when the Chinese economy is doing well, so does the AUD and if China continues to grow at the rate is has been, the AUD may regain some strength and pull rates lower again. Emigrating to Australia? Get a GBP/AUD quote.
Pound/New Zealand Dollar
GBP/NZD is at the highest since September last year having risen consistently throughout 2017 so far. The gains here are a mix of weakness in the NZ Currency and Sterling strength. As with most Sterling pairs at the moment, most of the gains have come from the Pound recovering some of it’s losses following the triggering of Article 50 last month. However exchange rates will remain susceptible to how the negotiations with the EU are going. New Zealand’s main export is dairy, so also keep an eye on demand and prices as this could also affect the Kiwi Dollar. Emigrating to New Zealand? Get a GBP/NZD quote.