Bank of England speeches ahead

GBP
Bank of England speeches ahead 

The Pound traded in a tight range against its peers last week but still made gains on a trade-weighted basis for the third week in a row. Sterling was supported by solid data on Friday, which helped lift the Pound above the 1.4230 interbank level against the US Dollar for the second time since April 2018. In politics, former chief advisor Dominic Cummings is expected to give a damning testimony about the government's handling of Covid. An inquiry is due to take place next spring and will look at areas such as keeping the borders open, the vaccine rollout, and the country's transition out of lockdown. Other events in the week ahead include Bank of England members speaking, house price data, and sales stats. 

EUR
Dampening hopes 

Sterling traded flat against the Euro last week, closing just 0.1% lower. However, despite trading in relatively tight ranges, the Euro index managed to reach 12-week highs. Last week, European Central Bank Chief Christine Lagarde dampened any hopes of tightening monetary policy, despite some positive data showing strength across the bloc. Lagarde said that the ECB still believes inflation will 'return to lower levels' in the future. It's a relatively quiet week for economic data, including German surveys, confidence stats, and French inflation numbers. 

USD
Considering tapering 

The Pound reached its highest level against the US Dollar since 24th February on Friday, climbing to 1.4234 interbank; these February and May GBP/USD levels are the highest since April 2018. The US Dollar has been steadily softening of late, and last week fell to levels not seen since early January on a trade-weighted basis. Meeting minutes released from the Federal Open Market Committee showed that policymakers would consider tapering bond purchases if ecostats continued to print strongly. While recent inflation data supports this view, labour market data in April disappointed. A number of Federal Reserve representatives will be speaking this week, and data will include Consumer Confidence; Durable Goods Orders; Gross Domestic Product Growth; Personal Spending; and the Federal Reserve's preferred method of inflation, PCE Inflation. 

AUD and NZD
RBNZ rate decision ahead 

The Pound managed to close 0.95% higher against the Australian Dollar last week, reaching the highest level since 6th November. Versus the New Zealand Dollar, Sterling closed 1.47% stronger, hitting seven-week highs. 

This week, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand will announce its latest interest rate decision and hold a follow-up press conference. Forecasts expect interest rates to remain at 0.25%, but markets will be looking for any clues about upcoming monetary policy changes. Balance of Trade stats will also be out for New Zealand, alongside Imports and Exports numbers. It's a quiet week for Australian data, with only the Westpac Leading Index due for release, which measures economic activity, worth noting. 

CAD
GBP/CAD touches three-week highs

The Pound to Canadian Dollar exchange rate traded in a tight range last week, closing only slightly higher than where it began on Monday, but having touched three-week highs. It's a quiet week for Canadian data, with only Average Weekly Earnings a noteworthy release.