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Pound Retreats as UK Retail Sales Dampen Hopes of BoE Rate Hike

Published: 19 Oct at 3 PM Tags: Euro, Dollar, Pound Sterling, America, UK, Eurozone, Australian Dollar, New Zealand Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Germany, Mexico,


The Pound (GBP) slumped further against most of its peers today as investors reacted to the UK’s disappointing retail sales data.

According to data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) retail sales fell sharply last month, plunging from 0.9% to -0.8% and falling well below expectations.

Most of Sterling losses were prompted by concerns that the recent drop in sales would make a November rate hike from the Bank of England (BoE) less likely, especially following yesterday’s poor wage figures.


The Pound Euro (GBP EUR) exchange rate fell over half a cent following the release of the UK’s latest retail data.

The single gains were tempered slightly however by events in Spain, with the Spanish government now planning to implement direct rule over Catalonia, something that could lead to increased civil unrest.

The Euro may tumble tomorrow morning however as economist forecast that Germany’s latest Producer Price Index will have slipped from 0.2% to 0.1% in September.

US Dollar

Sterling also slipped against the US Dollar (USD) today as the hopes of a rate hike from the BoE next month were battered by the UK’s poor retail sales.

However the ‘Greenback’ ceded some of these gains later in the afternoon, despite the Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Index exceeding expectations and rising from 23.8 to 27.9 in October.

Meanwhile the US Dollar may stumble again tomorrow at the US releases it latest housing data, with analysts forecasting that existing home sales may have slowed last month.

Canadian Dollar

After initially sliding this morning the Pound Canadian Dollar (GBP CAD) exchange rate began to recoup some of its losses by the afternoon as observers fear that talks to renegotiate the NAFTA trade agreement between the US, Canada and Mexico may not be going well.

The ‘Loonie’ looks set to rally once again on Friday however, with an expected uptick in domestic inflation and retail sales likely to drive the currency higher.

Australian Dollar

Sterling fell by around a cent against the Australian Dollar (AUD) today as fears that the Bank of England may delay its next rate hike following some poor British data over the past couple of days crippled the UK currency.

New Zealand Dollar

The Pound New Zealand Dollar (GBP NZD) exchange rate was able to buck the trend today as it skyrocketed over three cents to a new five-month high as Labour formed a new ruling coalition.

While markets are always unsettled about a change in the status quo, investors are particularly concerned that some of Labours policies could have a negative impact on the New Zealand economy.

As of Thursday, 19th October 2017, the Pound Sterling currency rates mentioned within this news item were as follows:

GBP EUR exchange rate was 1.1104, GBP USD exchange rate was 1.3157, GBP AUD exchange rate was 1.67, GBP NZD exchange rate was 1.8726, GBP CAD exchange rate was 1.6424, and GBP MXN exchange rate was 24.762.
Patrick James About Author: (289 Posts)Patrick completed his economics degree just as the global financial crisis struck in 2008. In the intervening years Patrick has made his mark, climbing to a prominent position within a large financial services provider. As part of his role Patrick uses his expertise to advise companies of the best ways to safeguard against currency risk.

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