The British pound has extended its losses in the Friday session. GBP/USD is currently trading at 1.3445, down 0.41% on the day.
Pound tumbling post-BoE
It’s been a miserable week for the British pound, which is down 1.76% this week. The driver behind the pound’s slide was the BoE meeting, as policy makers caught the markets off guard when they opted to maintain the cash rate at 0.10%. Governor Andrew Bailey had strongly hinted that that bank would raise rates at this week’s meeting, but in the end, the MPC voted 7-2 to stay put, with Bailey among the majority. Bailey noted that the decision had been a “close call”, but the markets reacted sharply, with the pound plunging 2.2% since the BoE’s surprise non-move.
The BoE has said it will raise rates in the “coming months”, but is clearly under pressure to make a move soon, and it could be faced with a credibility issue if it chooses to sit on the sidelines at the December meeting. The fact that the BoE is still running a QE scheme while talking about raising rates is also a potential source of confusion for the markets, as the two programmes are inconsistent with each other. In contradistinction, the Fed has no plans to raise rates before it winds up its bond purchase program.
Attention now shifts to the US, with the release of nonfarm payrolls later today. The consensus stands at around 450 thousand jobs added, and a reading above the 500 thousand level will reignite talk of an accelerated taper programme and possibly the Fed bringing forward guidance on a rate hike. That would likely give the US dollar a boost. Conversely, a print below 350 thousand will dampen rate expectations and likely weigh on the greenback.
GBP/USD Technical Analysis
- GBP/USD continues to break support levels as it falls lower. The pair is testing support at 1.3471. Below, there is monthly support at 1.3253
- There is resistance at 1.3570 and 1.3632
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