GBP/EUR: Pound Steady vs Euro Despite Stark IMF Brexit Warning
  • Pound (GBP) holds most of yesterday’s gains on hopes of a Brexit trade deal
  • UK CPI & PMIs in focus
  • Euro (EUR) resilient versus major peers despite surging covid cases
  • EZ PMI data in focus

The Pound Euro (GBP/EUR) exchange rate is moving mildly lower after surging in the previous session. The pair roared 1% higher in the previous session to close firmly above the key €1.10 psychological level at €1.1074, the high of the day. At 05:15 UTC, GBP/EUR trades -0.1% at €1.1066.

Brexit remains a key driver of the Pound. Comments by Irish Prime Minister Michael Martin that there are “greater hopes” of an agreement, combined with upbeat comments from other politicians lifted the Pound. Talks continue in Brussels and perhaps most importantly the lack of fingers pointing between the UK and the EU could be pointing to quiet progress.

UK unemployment data was grim but was shrugged off by investors focusing on Brexit. The UK unemployment level ticked higher 4.9% in the three months to October, better than the 5.1% forecast. However, redundancies surged to a record high as firms cut staff in the face of the pandemic.

Looking ahead UK inflation data, manufacturing and service sector PMIs might grab some attention from Brexit talks. UK inflation as measured by consumer prices is expected to rise 0.1% month on month in November, up from 0% last month. On an annual basis, analysts forecast a 0.6% increase, down from 0.7%.

Preliminary PMI data for December is expected to show the continued resilience in the manufacturing industry. Meanwhile the service sector is expected to rebound back into expansion after contracting sharply in the November lockdown.

The Euro continued to be well supported, thanks to the weaker US Dollar, even as covid cases across the old continent continue to surge. More Eurozone countries announced this week that they are tightening lockdown restrictions. Meanwhile, Italy has overtaken the UK for the most covid deaths in Europe.

Today the Eurozone economic calendar sees the release of manufacturing and service sector PMI. As with the UK, the manufacturing sector in the Eurozone is expected to remain resilient in December. However, the service sector is expected to remain deep in contraction.