Daily Currency Update

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Big jump in deaths for the UK and US unemployment claims in the spotlight

GBP - British Pound

The Pound ranges during Wednesday were relatively tight given what’s happening across the globe at the moment. Meanwhile, Wednesday's release of the final UK Manufacturing PMI, which was revised down to 47.8 in March versus 48.0 estimates earlier, did little to meaningful impetus. Cable briefly broke below 1.24 hitting a days low of 1.2335 before breaking back above 1.24 to hit a day’s high of 1.2439, we open this morning just above the 1.24 handle.

The UK witnessed some horrific numbers from the coronavirus pandemic yesterday. Official figures revealed the number of patients who have died has risen by 563. The also showed 29,474 people had tested positive for the virus, up 4,324 since Tuesday. The British government says it is ramping up its efforts to test more NHS workers in a bid to get healthy staff who are self-isolating back to work, they also need to try and squash the pressure they have come under about the amount of testing we do here compared to other countries.

The docket today is light for the UK and attention will turn to the US employment data later today. The next release for the UK will be Services PMI on Friday. Services is the biggest contributor to GDP so can have an impact on currency moves. Its pencilled in to show another drop from last month and we could see some record lows achieved here so one to watch tomorrow.

Key Movers

The data published from the US on Wednesday showed that the economic activity in the manufacturing sector contracted at a softer pace than expected with the ISM Manufacturing PMI coming in at 49.1 to beat analysts' estimate of 45. Meanwhile, the ADP's monthly National Employment Report showed that the private sector employment in March declined by 27K. However, the press release clarified that this reading was not reflecting the full impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the labour market as it was based on payroll records through the 12th of the month.

Italy seems to plateauing with its Covid-19 figures but deaths in Spain and France have reached new highs placing pressure on the single currency. Italy and Germany have extended their movement restrictions to after Easter, and other countries may follow. The ECB is still trying to come up with further fiscal measure to combat a stumbling economy, these could come in the form of ‘corona bonds but as of yet we have no further details on these measures. EUR/USD moved lower during Wednesday's trade and we open this morning at 1.0950.

Big release for today will come from the US unemployment claims. We are expecting a big number and some analysts have put this figure above 5 million, 3.6 million is the forecast.

Expected Ranges

GBP/USD: 1.2380 - 1.2480 ▲

GBP/EUR: 1.1310 - 1.1400 ▲

GBP/AUD: 2.0200 - 2.0450 ▼

GBP/NZD: 2.0720 - 2.0920 ▲