Sterling drifted lower on fears over protracted economic and political uncertainty.
The dollar regained ground on Thursday with USD/JPY support from strong labour-market data. The Euro retreated on dovish ECB expectations, although it did prove to be resilient with support on the crosses.
Oil prices were subjected to a significant correction after OPEC suggestions that production could be increased from June.
Dollar gains contributed to a sharp decline in precious metals with gold dropping below $1,300 per ounce while silver slid below the key $15.00 per ounce level.
Sterling drifted lower on fears over protracted economic and political uncertainty. Equities were held in tight ranges as caution prevailed.
Delayed Chinese March trade data was mixed with stronger exports, but weak imports.
Sterling trading was subdued during Thursday with no data releases and an important sense of anti-climax following the EU Brexit extension until the end of October 2019. Although the threat of a ‘no-deal’ exit had been eliminated, there were further concerns over damage to the economy, especially with underlying investment liable to remain weak. In this context, Bank of England Governor Carney warned that capital spending had stalled since 2016 and this was undermining productivity.
There were also concerns that there would be no progress in breaking the domestic political deadlock, especially with parliament now in recess for the Easter break. There was also intense pressure on Prime Minister May to resign.
With oil prices under pressure, Sterling was unable to gain any traction with further GBP/USD resistance on approach to 1.3100 and a retreat to 1.3050 while GBP/EUR held above 1.1570. Sterling was unable to gain any traction on Friday with a lack of buying incentives.
|10:00||Euro-Zone Industrial Production (Y/Y)(FEB)||-2.10%||-1.10%|
|10:00||Euro-Zone Industrial Production (M/M)(FEB)||-||1.40%|
|13:30||USD Export Price Index (M/M)(MAR)||0.1||0.6|
|13:30||USD Import Price Index (M/M)(MAR)||0.30%||0.60%|
|15:00||USD Michigan Consumer Sentiment(APR 01)||98||98.4|
|18:00||USD Baker Hughes US Oil Count||-||831|