Signs of improvement

Today's news headlines: 

‘Eurozone’s economy shows signs of adapting to lockdowns’. As countries such as Germany and France make their way through yet another lockdown, fundamentals in the economy look to be improving. Both consumer sentiment and foot traffic to retail stores has improved since January despite the increase in restrictions. This has led some economists to believe the pull back for Q1 of 2021 may not be as severe as first predicted. Coronavirus vaccination rates have also improved, with Germany now vaccinating an estimated 700,000 people a day pointing to a full economic re-opening later in the year. (Financial Times)

‘UK economy returns to growth despite Covid restrictions’. The UK is showing signs of improved growth. With GDP edging higher in February despite the country being in its third national lockdown, economic prospects are beginning to look more favourable. The country grew an estimated 0.4% in February versus a -2.2% decline in January. As the first step in easing restrictions began on the 12th April, economists believe this will kickstart the economy with expectations of around 4-5% growth in the second quarter of 2021. (Financial Times)

Today's events, rates, and data 

  • UK markets finished marginally higher yesterday as GDP came in weaker than expected. The FTSE 100 rose 0.02% while the FTSE 250 climbed 0.52%. In the US, the S&P 500 reached yet another all-time high, rising 0.33%. Cable has begun to nudge higher this morning with the pair up around 0.30% in early trading. The Euro also continues to strengthen against the Dollar, up 0.13% so far today.

Today's events

New Zealand Official Interest Rate: 0.25% vs 0.25% previously
Eurozone Industrial Production m/m: 10:00am
ECB President Lagarde Speaks: 3:00pm
MPC Member Jonathan Haskel Speaks: 3:30pm
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell Speaks: 5:00pm
FOMC Member John Williams Speaks: 7:30pm
FOMC Member Richard Clarida Speaks: 8:45pm
FOMC Member Raphael Bostic Speaks: 9:00pm

Interbank rates

GBP/USD: 1.3787
GBP/EUR: 1.1524
EUR/USD: 1.1966
USD/CAD: 1.2542
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