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Boris Johnson set out his roadmap to the end of lockdown today in the House of Commons. During his statement, where he outlined getting the country back to normal, the pound nudged higher against the euro and dollar. His statement suggested much of England could be back to normal by the end of June.
Andrew Neil wrote on Twitter: “Sterling nudges over $1.41 and €1.16 on PM’s statement.”
Sterling had already hit a new three-year high of $1.4050 in early London trading today as it reached its highest levels since April 2018 and has now risen more than 2.6 percent against the dollar this year.
MUFG currency analyst Lee Hardman said: “If the highs from April 2018 are taken out it will encourage expectations that the pound is adjusting to a new higher equilibrium now that Brexit risks have diminished.
“Whereas if those highs remain in place, market participants may then start to question whether recent pound strength is overshooting and thereby increasing the risk of a correction lower.”
Britain moved faster than most countries to secure vaccine supplies and has been inoculating people rapidly since December, a strategy that has driven sterling and stock markets higher on hopes of an economic rebound.
The recent pound strengthening has been attributed to the UK’s success in providing Covid-19 vaccinations which has seen 17.6 million people, more than a quarter of the 67 million population, receive their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine.
Mr Johnson’s so-called roadmap will pass through four stages, with five weeks in between, and the final step, when most restrictions would be lifted, not starting until June 21 at the earliest.
The Prime Minister told MPs:”There is therefore no credible route to a zero Covid Britain or a zero Covid world.
“And we cannot persist indefinitely with restrictions that debilitate our economy, our physical and mental well-being, and the life chances of our children.
“And that is why it is so crucial that this roadmap is cautious but also irreversible. We’re setting out on, what I hope and believe, is a one-way road to freedom.”
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