Return to growth

Today's news headlines: 

‘UK retail sales return to growth despite lockdown’. Retail sales in the UK grew 1% last month compared to the same period in 2020. They were thought to be boosted by the prospect of children’s return back to school and increased spending on home improvement. Consumers reliance on internet shopping continued with all non-essential stores remaining closed until April 12th.  Consumer confidence rose to the highest level in 12 months according to a survey run by Barclaycard. Household savings also rose, with 40% of respondents reporting they had more money set aside compared to pre-pandemic levels. (Financial Times)

‘Frost urged to cool it as tensions flare with Brussels over Brexit’. UK businesses have called on the government to step back from their abrasive approach to dealing with the EU in order to build a mutually beneficial trading relationship. Lord Frost’s promotion to EU relations minister last month has prompted a deterioration in relations between the two sides, with Northern Irish customs arrangements a key sticking point. Businesses have already suffered millions of pounds of losses as a result of Brexit red tape and warned that the UK economy faces further turmoil if diplomatic relations continue to falter. (Financial Times)

Today's events, rates, and data 

  • Overnight, US equity futures climbed higher after a mixed day on Wall Street in which investors rotated away from tech and into value stocks. Benchmark treasury yields retreated whilst the US Dollar index traded 0.2% lower.

Today's events

UK BRC Retail Sales Monitor: 9.5% vs 7.1% previously
Italian Industrial Production: 9.00am
Eurozone Revised GDP: 10.00am
Aussie RBA Gov Lowe Speaks: 10.00pm

Interbank rates

GBP/USD: 1.3875
GBP/EUR: 1.1675
EUR/USD: 1.1880
USD/CAD: 1.2650