Pound Steady Despite Concerns

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Hope burns eternal for a Brexit deal; markets brace for the release of US economic data.

GBPThe pound sterling steadied during London trading on Wednesday, after France halted its partial blockade of the English-France border. The goal of the blockade was to stop the spread of what appears to be a new strain of the coronavirus, which is prevalent in the UK. Market sentiment has also improved regarding a Brexit deal, though there is still no concrete resolution, positive or negative. Still, Forex traders, as well as analysts, are hopeful that a deal will be signed before December 31st. The pound is likely to continue to be weighed upon by new regulations being put in place globally regarding air travel and freight out of the UK, with many countries imposing shut downs entirely or requiring passenger certification that they have received the COVID-19 vaccination.

At 11:12 am in London, the GBP/USD was trading higher at $1.3423, a gain of 0.5129% and off the session peak of $1.34449, while the low was established at $1.33497. The EUR/GBP was lower at 0.9077 pence, down 0.3185%; the pair has ranged from 0.90644 pence to 0.91162 pence in today’s session. The GBP/JPY was higher at 138.837 yen, up 0.3085%, off the session high of 139.021 yen.

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Looking ahead at the economic calendar, markets will focus on today’s release of US durable goods figures for November, as well as new and continuing claims for unemployment support from the US Labor Department. Analysts have predicted that durable goods orders will have fallen to 0.6% in November, down from the previous 1.3% reading. Analysts have also predicted that initial claims for jobless benefits should be flat at 885,000 for the period ending December 18th, while continuing claims are likely to be higher at 5,558,000 through December 11th, up from the previous 5,508,000.

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