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Today's news headlines: 

‘UK consumer spending growth slows as rising living costs bite’. UK consumer spending slowed at the start of 2022 as effects from ‘Plan B’ restrictions worked their way through the economy and the threat of rising living costs loomed. Credit and debit card spending increased 7.4% in January compared with a 12.0% rise in December, with hospitality spending falling 6.0%. The travel sector also faced a moderate shock as the work from home order returned. (Financial Times)

‘Long Covid now major cause of long-term job absence, say quarter of UK employers’. As the UK moves towards normality with the lifting of all Coronavirus restrictions last month, employers are still finding some difficulty with Covid-related absences. The Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) found in a survey that a quarter of businesses recognise long Covid as one of the top three causes for absenteeism.


Asian indices struggled for direction overnight, while another weak showing by US Tech knocked markets. Bond yields continue to move higher, with the US 10-year approaching 1.95%. EUR/USD is holding ono the $1.14 handle this morning as a quiet day of data awaits.


UK British Retail Consortium Retail Sales Monitor y/y (Jan): 8.1% (est. 0.7%)
Italian Retail Sales m/m (Dec): 9:00AM
US Trade Balance: 1:30PM
Australia Westpac Consumer Sentiment: 11:30PM

Interbank rates:

GBP/USD – 1.3532
GBP/EUR – 1.1869
EUR/USD – 1.1400
USD/CAD – 1.2685

The markets are moving. To speak to our team, please call +44 (0)20 3465 8200.