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1st November 2017 - Exchange Rates News written by TorFX for

1st November 2017 News: Hopes for Brexit Keep Pound (GBP) Strong

Pound Sterling (GBP)

Anticipation for Thursday’s upcoming Bank of England (BoE) policy decision and fresh hopes for Brexit negotiations have helped the Pound advance in recent sessions.

On Tuesday, EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier indicated he was ready to speed up Brexit negotiations, following months of disagreement on the UK-EU divorce bill. This increased hopes that UK-EU trade talks could begin in full soon, perhaps even by the end of the year, making Sterling more appealing.

Investors are still entertaining the possibility that the Bank of England will hike UK interest rates on Thursday, and Sterling saw even stronger demand following the publication of a better-than-expected manufacturing PMI from Markit on Wednesday morning.

US Dollar (USD)

The Pound to US Dollar exchange rate strengthened on Tuesday as investors became more hopeful about the Brexit process and the Bank of England decision. Meanwhile, resurgent concerns about the Trump-Russia scandal have weighed on the US Dollar.

Wednesday will see the Federal Reserve hold its November policy decision – but investors don’t expect any changes from the bank this month. Instead, the tone the bank takes about upcoming policy decisions will be vital to ‘Greenback’ movement.

If the Fed avoids a hawkish tone or takes a vague stance on interest rates the US Dollar could plunge. However, it’s likely the Fed will signal that a rate hike is indeed on the cards for December.

Euro (EUR)

The Pound to Euro exchange rate climbed on Tuesday, and by Wednesday morning the pair was trending near its best levels since July.

While most of Tuesday’s Eurozone data was solid, October’s inflation figure was disappointing – like Germany’s on Monday. The Eurozone Consumer Price Index (CPI) is projected to have slipped from 1.5% to 1.4% despite being forecast to remain at 1.5%.

As markets now expect the European Central Bank (ECB) will have more reason to leave Eurozone interest rates near their lowest levels in the long-term, investors overlooked the day’s strong Eurozone growth and unemployment results.

Australian Dollar (AUD)

The Pound to Australian Dollar exchange rate surged on Tuesday due to hopes that Brexit talks would start speeding up. As a result, GBP/AUD hit its best levels since May.

Demand for the Australian Dollar was limp amid a lack of supportive domestic news. Wednesday’s Australian manufacturing PMI from AiG dropped from 54.2 to 51.1, disappointing investors.

On top of underwhelming domestic data, the Australian Dollar has been weighed down by strong data from the US and high bets that the Federal Reserve will hike US interest rates in December.

New Zealand Dollar (NZD)

The Pound to New Zealand Dollar exchange rate fell back from its best levels since the Brexit vote overnight, due to an unexpectedly strong New Zealand employment report from Q3.

New Zealand’s Q3 participation rate improved considerably, from 70% to 71.1%, but despite this the unemployment rate still improved from 4.8% to 4.6%. The figure was expected to only improve to around 4.7%.

Wage data from the report was strong too and helped give the ‘Kiwi’ one of its biggest boosts since the new Labour coalition government came into power.

Canadian Dollar (CAD)

The Pound to Canadian Dollar exchange rate climbed to its best levels since June on Tuesday, and was holding these highs on Wednesday morning despite strong oil price news.

Prices of oil, Canada’s most lucrative commodity, have neared two-year-highs – but this has been unable to considerably strengthen the ‘Loonie’ against a stronger Pound.

The Canadian Dollar softened further on Tuesday following a poor Canadian growth report from August. Canada’s growth rate was forecast to rise from 0% to 0.1%, but the figure instead slipped to -0.1%.

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