The weekend was dominated by headlines which revolved around Brexit and were a far cry from the Dow Jones report which claimed a divorce agreement could be settled within a week. Less than a week ago, the outlook was more positive than it had been for some time and the pound hit its highest level against the euro since 21 June 2018, but reports over the past couple of days have dampened optimism.
DUP leader Arlene Foster is said to be ready for a no-deal Brexit, David Davis has called for ministers to rebel against a Brexit deal, Sinn Féin has demanded a Northern Ireland vote in event of a no-deal Brexit, Nicola Sturgeon has called for an extension of the Brexit transition period, and even Downing Street has conceded that talks are at an impasse over backstop differences.
Theresa May felt moved to speak to MPs yesterday and told them that the UK and EU weren’t far apart on agreeing a deal. However, that appeared to miss the point somewhat, as May is becoming an increasingly isolated figure in negotiating a deal. As it stands, it is nigh on impossible to imagine a majority in the Commons supporting her plans. Indeed, following her speech, several political commentators talked about the fact that there was no support for May’s plans from anywhere in the Commons. One MP fired a Tweet out that, by all accounts, doesn’t seem too far wrong, while Reuters reported that Angela Merkel said that Brexit is looking ‘a bit more difficult’.
Sterling began the day by strengthening against the dollar and made some slight gains against the euro, but slipped back as the afternoon progressed. There was almost a two-cent swing between the GBP/USD highs and lows yesterday, which helps to cement how uncertain everything is at the moment. So much hinges on what happens next in the negotiations and with only five months to go before the UK withdraws from the European Union, the clock is ticking louder and louder.
We’re in for a choppy few weeks, months or even years. If you’re looking to make a significant transfer, such as to purchase a property before Brexit, it’s imperative that you protect your budget. Speak to your Personal Trader on 020 7898 0541 to find out how a forward contract can help you lock in an exchange rate for up to 12 months.