GBP/USD – British pound continues upward trend as services PMI improves

GBP/USD has posted slight gains in the Wednesday session. Currently, GBP/USD is trading at 1.2731, up 0.25% on the day. On the fundamentals front, British Services PMI improved in May to 51.0, above the estimate of 50.6. In the U.S., ADP nonfarm payrolls posted a meager gain of 27 thousand, compared to the estimate of 185 thousand.

British PMIs are pointing to weakness in the U.K. economy. The services sector is barely showing expansion, and the manufacturing and services PMIs both came in under the 50-level, indicating contraction. Construction PMI fell to 48.6, its third decline in four months. This followed a manufacturing PMI of 49.4, marking the first contraction since July 2016. Manufacturing news from the U.S. also disappointed, as ISM Manufacturing PMI slowed to 52.1, down from 53.0 a month earlier. This was the PMI’s weakest reading since November 2018. Global demand has fallen off due to trade tensions, and unless this situation improves, manufacturing in the U.K and the U.S. could continue to head downwards.

Is the  Federal Reserve planning a rate cut? Fed policymakers have tried to present an aura of neutrality regarding rate moves, but has taken a sharp U-turn this week in favor of an easing bias. On Tuesday, Fed chair Jerome Powell said that the Fed would “act as appropriate to sustain the expansion”, and analysts noted that he did not mention his “patient” approach to monetary policy, which has been a buzzword in Powell’s recent comments. This comes on the heels of comments from James Bullard, president of the St. Louis Fed. Bullard stated that the Fed might have to lower rates shortly due to low inflation and the ongoing trade war with China. Bullard warned that the Fed may have to deal with “an economy that is expected to grow more slowly going forward, with some risk that the slowdown could be sharper than expected due to ongoing global trade regime uncertainty“. Bullard added that the current benchmark rate, which is at a range of 2.25% to 2.50%, is too high for current economic conditions, and recommended lowering rates in order to stabilize the economy.

Is the USD about to roll over? Gold up, Oil down

Rally Mode Continues on EU Data and Fed Rate Cut Expectations

GBP/USD Fundamentals

Wednesday (June 5)

  • 4:30 British Services PMI. Estimate 50.6. Actual 51.0
  • 8:15 US ADP Nonfarm Employment Change. Estimate 185K. Actual 27K
  • 9:45 US FOMC Member Clarida Speaks
  • 9:45 US Final Services PMI. Estimate 50.9
  • 10:00 US ISM Non-Manufacturing PMI. Estimate 55.6
  • 10:00 US FOMC Bowman Speaks
  • 10:30 US Crude Oil Inventories. Estimate -1.7M
  • 14:00 US Beige Book

Thursday (June 6)

  • 8:30 US Unemployment Claims. Estimate 215K

*All release times are DST

*Key events are in bold

GBP/USD for Wednesday, June 5, 2019

GBP/USD June 5 at 9:35 DST

Open: 1.2699 High: 1.2744 Low: 1.2691 Close: 1.2731

GBP/USD Technical

S1 S2 S1 R1 R2 R3
1.2477 1.2615 12723 1.2841 1.2910 1.3000

GBP/USD was flat in the Asian session and showed limited movement in European trade but then recovered. The pair has edged higher in the North American session

  • 1.2723 is a fluid line. Currently, it is a weak support level
  • 1.2841 is the next resistance line
  • Current range: 1.2723 to 1.2841

Further levels in both directions:

  • Below: 1.2723, 1.2615, 1.2477 and 1.2401
  • Above: 1.2841, 1.2910 and 1.3000

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Kenny Fisher

Kenny Fisher

Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Kenny Fisher joined OANDA in 2012 as a Currency Analyst. Kenny writes a daily column about current economic and political developments affecting the major currency pairs, with a focus on fundamental analysis. Kenny began his career in forex at Bendix Foreign Exchange in Toronto, where he worked as a Corporate Account Manager for over seven years.