GBP/USD Back Above 1.5650 as U.K. Sales Surge

The pound rose against the dollar, climbing from the lowest level in more than a year, after a report showed U.K. retail sales increased more in November than economists predicted.

Sterling strengthened the most versus the euro in 10 months as the Office for National Statistics said the volume of sales including auto fuel increased 1.6 percent, the most this year. Economists forecast a 0.4 percent gain, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey. Minutes of the Bank of England’s December meeting, released yesterday, showed policy makers voted 7-2 to keep interest rates at a record low. U.K. government bonds fell.

“The market was taken by surprise,” said Jane Foley, senior foreign-exchange strategist at Rabobank International in London. “Retail sales were extremely strong. However, markets aren’t anticipating a rate rise until 2016 and even strong data isn’t enough to change that.”


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