GBP slides as Boris tests positive for COVID-19

GBP slides as Boris tests positive for COVID-19

Sterling slid on Friday after UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson tested positive for coronavirus, although Number 10 was keen to stress that he’s only experiencing mild symptoms.

I’m not quite sure why the positive test result warranted such a move in the currency, it’s just another reminder of how otherwise rational markets do have a tendency to behave quite irrationally occasionally. I imagine the move may well reverse before long and the currency find itself back where it was just before the news broke.

It was inevitable that there was going to be many well known positive test results. In fact, I’m surprised more world leaders and other leading figures haven’t already tested positive given the number of people they come into contact with on a daily basis. Perhaps more will follow in the coming days and weeks.

There has been a lot of criticism of people not taking warnings around social distancing and staying at home seriously enough, perhaps such a high profile case will be a reminder that no one is safe and we should all be taking precautions.

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Craig Erlam

Craig Erlam

Senior Currency Analyst at OANDA
Based in London, England, Craig Erlam joined OANDA in 2015 as a Market Analyst. With more than five years' experience as a financial market analyst and trader, he focuses on both fundamental and technical analysis while conducting macroeconomic commentary. He has been published by The Financial Times, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Telegraph, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Sky News, Bloomberg, CNBC and BBC. Craig holds a full membership to the Society of Technical Analysts and he is recognized as a Certified Financial Technician by the International Federation of Technical Analysts.