It’s been a good two days for the pound, hitting a high on Tuesday of 1.171. Despite a slightly downward drift this morning, it remains strong against the euro, at 1.168, as yesterday’s Parliamentary debate saw Yvette Cooper’s amendment passed, formalising the possibility to vote on extending Article 50 if both Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement and a no-deal are rejected.
Labour’s alternative to the government’s plan, involving a customs union and close alignment, was roundly rejected by Parliament by 323 to 240 votes. Following the defeat, Corbyn put his support behind a second referendum, with some reservations – saying ‘We will back a public vote in order to prevent a damaging Tory Brexit or a disastrous no-deal outcome. We will also continue to push for the other available options to prevent those outcomes, including a close economic relationship based on our credible alternative plan or general election’.
Meanwhile, the government has published its impact report of a no-deal Brexit, stating it could leave the UK economy 6.3-9% smaller after 15 years, compared to expected growth rates without a no-deal.
Today, we have the Gfk consumer confidence for February, expected to come in lower than January, already the lowest since 2013.