Foreign currency market

Proud pound refuses to bow following manufacturing slump
  • Manufacturing PMI slips to 5 month low, orders fall
  • US measure rises on improving orders and employment
  • Sterling remains range bound vs euro ahead of EU data
  • US ADP at 13.15, factory orders at 15.00

 The May 1st bank holiday on the continent made sure that the European session was a fairly quiet one yesterday, with news from the US the main driver of movement later in the day. With Europe off, the focus definitely shifted to the UK and US with one’s manufacturing sector found wanting and the other not.

UK manufacturing deteriorated in April with the PMI reading for the sector coming in at 50.5, the lowest since December. This was the 5th consecutive month of alternating improvements and deteriorations in the sector and confirmed the “bouncing along the bottom” nature of the UK economy has continued in April. Manufacturing contributed negatively by 0.1% to GDP in Q1 when the PMI averaged 51.9 so this reading of 50.5 could indicate that a similar drag may occur in Q2 unless an improvement is forthcoming.

It’s obvious that the Q1 GDP figure was a horror show but the market seems reluctant to believe that the UK is in recession and if it is, that it will be a short one. The -0.2% print stood so far apart from other data such as the PMI surveys and it is on this basis that some analysts, myself included, believe that we will see the upcoming revisions will move the number into positive territory and this could be contributing to the recent GBP strength.

Source: Foreign Currency Market News

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