After a sour start to the week for Sterling on Brexit uncertainty, GBP bulls were able to close out a choppy week net green on positive U.K. retail sales data and a slight improvement on Brexit deal expectations.
United Kingdom Headlines and Economic data
Rightmove U.K. House Price Index: Average price of property coming to market dips by 0.5% m/m – National sales agreed are up 50% on October last year, and Rightmove now estimates there’s 650,000 sales going through the buying and selling process, 67% more than at the same time in 2019
Brexit trade talks could last another two weeks: Ireland’s Coveney – “I think we are more likely to get a deal than not, purely because the consequences of not getting a deal are so significant and so costly for the UK and Ireland as it happens, and for some other EU countries,” Coveney told an online conference.
Brexit boss Frost tells Johnson to expect EU trade deal early next week – The Sun – this seems to have been the catalyst for Sterling’s move higher on the session, countering broad risk aversion sentiment as traders shifted focus from positive vaccine updates to rising virus restrictions throughout the U.S. and Europe.
UK fishing groups urge PM Johnson to ‘hold firm’ in EU talks – “Fisheries, a sector laden with symbolism for Brexit supporters but which accounts for 0.1% of the economy, has become one of the most persistent sticking points in the trade talks, which are running out of time to find a breakthrough.”
UK inflation ticks higher as pandemic pushes up some prices – “Consumer prices rose 0.7% in annual terms, after a 0.5% rise in September, the Office for National Statistics said, still far below the Bank of England’s 2% target.”
U.K. Manufacturing demand slumps as activity remains weak – CBI – The survey of 277 manufacturers found that output volumes declined in 9 of 17 sub-sectors, with the headline drop in output driven by the aerospace manufacturing sub-sector.
Brexit Talks Suspended After Negotiator Catches Covid-19 – “Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, will suspend talks with his U.K. counterpart David Frost “for a short period,” he said in a tweet on Thursday. He will also go into a period of quarantine, according to a person familiar with the negotiations.”
U.K. GfK consumer confidence index dipped from -31 to -33 – “On all fronts, economic headwinds still outnumber tailwinds and consumers can be excused for showing little in the way of Christmas cheer at present.”
UK retail sales rise in October thanks to early Christmas shoppers – “Retail sales rose for the sixth consecutive month, increasing by 1.2 per cent compared with September, data from the Office for National Statistics showed on Friday.”
U.K. Public sector net borrowing hits £22.3bn in October as debt pile grows – “Borrowing for the first seven months of the financial year is estimated to have been £214.9bn – the highest in any April to October period and the sixth-highest borrowing in any month since records began in 1993.”