The pound is having a quiet week, after some sharp swings last week. Monday was a holiday in the US, and it was a quiet session for the US dollar. The currency markets are calm today as well, with the exception of the sinking Japanese yen.
British pound eyes CPI
Last week was the turn of the central banks to perform on stage, with the Fed, BoE and SNB all raising rates. All three central banks are keeping a close eye on rising inflation and tightening policy in order to wrestle down inflation. The BoE has been accused of raising a white flag with regard to inflation, and last week’s tepid rate hike of 0.25% won’t silence the critics.
The UK releases the May inflation report on Wednesday, with headline CPI expected to nudge higher to 9.1%, up from 9.0% in April. The BoE estimates that inflation will peak above 11%, sometime later this year. With the BoE grimly predicting that inflation will hit double-digits, the cost of living crisis, which is already bad, is poised to get even worse. This has led to inflation expectations continuing to accelerate, and the UK rail strike, the biggest in 30 years, is a reflection of workers taking extreme action in the face of rising inflation. Consumer confidence is down, and a drop and consumer spending would be disastrous for an economy that may be headed for a recession.
In the US, Fed Chair Powell will testify on Capitol Hill on Wednesday and Thursday, and the ratings should be high, following the Fed’s largest rate hike since 1994. Fed members Barkin and Mester will speak later today, and the markets will be listening, looking for insights regarding upcoming rate hikes.
- GBP/USD is testing resistance at 1.2292. Above, we have resistance at 1.2441
- There is support at 1.2187 and 1.1969
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