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Sterling hit by lower Consumer Price Index figures

Published:  18 July, 2012

Sterling faces a knock back as latest Consumer Price Index lowers City expectations.

Currency rates:

EURO/GBP - 1.2733
US$/GBP - 1.5637
CHF/GBP - 1.5292
CAN$/GBP - 1.5843
AUS$/GBP - 1.5182
ZAR/GBP - 12.7984
JPY/GBP - 123.55
HKD/GBP - 12.1362
NZD/GBP - 1.9668
SEK/GBP - 10.8932
AED/GBP - 5.7414
US$/EURO - 1.2281
INR/GBP - 86.43

Sterling had a relatively weak day as inflation data in the form of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) figures came in lower than expected at 2.4. This provided some respite to consumers, but, created downward pressure on the pound as it underlines the sentiment the UK economy is slowing down, according to Smart Currency Exchange.

The Bank of England's latest meeting minutes are released today which are expected to show that all nine members voted for the increase in quantitative easing by £50 billion, but some economists claim some members voted for an even larger increase.

The change in the number of people claiming unemployment benefits will also be announced.

The euro started the day fairly strong after a successful Spanish bond auction; but, came under pressure as German business climate sentiment and (ZEW) economic sentiment were both worse than expected. With very little data released across Europe today, the markets will look elsewhere for influence.

The US dollar had a fairly poor start to the day,  but strengthened due to risk aversion as the markets were left disappointed by the lack of clarity provided by the chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank.

It was hoped that the chairman would give a clear signal towards more quantitative easing when he was speaking yesterday,  but instead provided little new information and simply reiterated his sentiment from last week, indicating that the central bank were ready to act should market conditions require it.

On the data front, Core CPI figures released came out as expected at 0.2%.

Today, the chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank is speaking once again, whilst figures showing the change in the number of new residential building permits granted in the previous month will also be released.

Elsewhere, the Australian dollar was fairly strong yesterday as minutes from the latest Australian monetary policy meeting suggested that another rate cut was not imminent.

Other news released included the Bank of Canada keeping interest rates on hold as expected. The Bank of Canada's monetary policy report and press conference will be the main news on the agenda today as the markets look for further insight into yesterday's interest rate decisions as well as information on the state of the economy.

To watch a market update from Smart Currency Exchange click here: