australian-dollar-coins - AUD

The Australian Dollar is continuing its descent on Friday, extending losses for a second straight session. The Pound Australian Dollar exchange rate settled on Thursday +0.37% at 1.8620.

At 09:15 UTC, GBP/AUD is trading +0.35% at 1.8687. This is approximately mid-way between the daily traded range of 1.8587 – 1.8719. Despite today’s gains the pair is still on track to lose just shy of 1% across the week, marking the third straight week of losses.

GBP: UK Retail Sales -18.1% in April

The Pound was trading mixed versus its peers on the final day of the week following dire retail sales data.

Figures from of the Office of National Statistics revealed that British retail sales crashed -18.1% in April as many stores remained closed amid the coronavirus outbreak. The drop was worse than the -16% decline that analysts had predicted and a fall from March’s -5.2% decline.

Clothing sales plummeted by 50.2% as most high street shops kept their doors shut. However, online shopping sales reached a record high of 30.7%, highlighting the changing habits of the nation.

Despite the gloomy news April is expected to be the bottom and retail sales should start showing signs of recovery going forwards, clawing back some ground in May.

The data comes following yesterday’s better than forecast service sector and manufacturing PMI releases, which showed the sectors were contracting at a slower pace in May than April. However, the sectors remain a long way from expansion.

USD: China’s New Security Law Threatens More Protests & A Reaction From Trump

The Australian Dollar, also referred to as a proxy for China, was trading sharply lower at the end of the week as US – Chinese relations took a turn for the worse. Relations between the two powers cooled after reports that China is planning to limit freedom in the financial hub Hong Kong following the pro-democracy protests at the turn of the year.

Reports that China is planning a new security bill, which is will enter directly into Hong Kong’s mini-constitution, bypassing the territory’s Legislative Council is unnerving investors. The move by China risks new protests in Hong Kong. President Trump was quick to respond warning China against the move and escalating tensions in an already difficult relationship. is a news site only and not a currency trading platform. is a site operated by TransferWise Inc. ("We", "Us"), a Delaware Corporation. We do not guarantee that the website will operate in an uninterrupted or error-free manner or is free of viruses or other harmful components. The content on our site is provided for general information only and is not intended as an exhaustive treatment of its subject. We expressly disclaim any contractual or fiduciary relationship with you on the basis of the content of our site, any you may not rely thereon for any purpose. You should consult with qualified professionals or specialists before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content on our site. Although we make reasonable efforts to update the information on our site, we make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content on our site is accurate, complete or up to date, and DISCLAIM ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. Some of the content posted on this site has been commissioned by Us, but is the work of independent contractors. These contractors are not employees, workers, agents or partners of TransferWise and they do not hold themselves out as one. The information and content posted by these independent contractors have not been verified or approved by Us. The views expressed by these independent contractors on do not represent our views.