Sterling Weaker Ahead of Local Elections

UK Prime Minister Theresa May held her Brexit cabinet meeting yesterday afternoon which could offer further direction for the Brexit negotiations and hence the pound. The issue of the day is whether Britain should remain part of the customs union with the EU. Brexit negotiator Oliver Robbins is trying to steer the government towards a customs partnership that would keep some of the benefits of the single market although members of the cabinet are unlikely to vote in favour of this option.

Overnight there has been a strong backlash within the government against the proposed customs partnership and this only adds to the uncertainty for the pound ahead of local elections tomorrow. GBP EUR has fallen to a low of 1.322 this morning. This could be a milestone in the Brexit process and any developments are likely to see new direction for the pound. Political uncertainty continues to be a major driving force for sterling exchange rates.

The pound is set for a volatile few months but it will be later in May when the House of Commons will be forced to vote on a number of amendments that will try to enforce a close relationship with the EU with a view to keeping Britain in the single market. This will be a huge test for Theresa May and a vote of confidence has been mooted which would take the country close to the prospect of a general election.

UK Purchasing Managers Index data for the construction sector could give the pound a boost if there is any pick up following the awful winter which has helped push down UK Gross Domestic Product after the Beast from the East. The services sector numbers will be released tomorrow and could also provide a rally if there is some relief for the markets that it is not all doom and gloom

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