Market Report 19/03/2018
Last week saw the pound in nervy territory against the euro and US dollar as weak data and announcement from Unilever stating it would select its premises in Rotterdam to be its sole headquarters rather than its location in London.
While markets initially feared this was a move motivated by Brexit, the consumer goods giant relayed that it was simply a change in structure and that its presence in Great Britain would remain unchanged apart from the relocating of a small number of staff to the Netherlands.
This backing was enough to see GBP/EUR recover its losses and end last week at levels above 1.13. A Big week ahead for GBP as a raft of data is released at the mid-way point of this week (details below)
A Poor week for EUR saw losses made against its major counterparts. EU unemployment data showed stagnation in the sector last week; pairing this with an indecisive election in Italy the EUR has slumped. Italian coalition negotiations could cause some turbulence for the Euro as the terms of any agreement are made public. The parties now must negotiate some form of coalition agreement, one that is almost certain to leave Italy with a populist government. This has presented a unique buying opportunity for EUR investors as the single currency has dropped off to 1.1358 against GBP and 1.2269 against the USD.
With the exception of the Pound, the greenback was up against most of its major currency counterparts during last weeks trading session. The US Dollar index (which measures a basket of currencies) closed the day .3% higher. The Markets reacted positively to jobs data on Friday and this gave the USD a real stepping stone at the close of play on Friday. All eyes will be on this weeks FED speech; with the FED expected to raise rates by 0.25%. This may be already priced in , but further indications of rate hikes throughout the year could be the catalyst for USD mid-week gains.