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Forex News: Pound Climbs As UK Jobless Rate Remains At

Pound Climbs As UK Jobless Rate Remains At Four-decade Low

01/24/2018 - 05:40:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - The pound advanced against its major counterparts in early European deals on Wednesday, after a data showed that the UK unemployment rate held steady at the lowest level seen since 1975.

Data from the Office for National Statistics showed that the jobless rate came in at 4.3 percent in three months to November, the same rate as in three months to August, and in line with expectations. This was the joint lowest since 1975. In the same of 2016, the unemployment rate was 4.8 percent.

The number of people out of work totaled 1.44 million, which was little changed compared with June to August.

At the same time, the employment rate rose to 75.3 percent from 74.5 percent a year ago. The rate was the joint highest since records began in 1971.

Average weekly earnings including bonuses grew 2.5 percent and that excluding bonuses increased 2.4 percent from last year.

The currency showed mixed performance in the Asian session. While it rose against the greenback and the euro, it held steady against the yen. Against the franc, it fell.

Extending early gains, the pound hit more than a 1-1/2-year high of 1.4118 against the greenback. Continuation of the pound's uptrend may see it challenging resistance around the 1.43 mark.

Bouncing off from an early low of 154.13 against the yen, the pound edged up to 154.71. If the pound rises further, 156.00 is likely seen as its next resistance level.

Final data from the Cabinet Office showed that Japan's leading index climbed less than estimated in November but remained at the highest level in nearly four years.

The leading index, which measures the future economic activity, rose to 108.3 in November from 106.5 in October.

The pound hit 0.8750 against the euro, its strongest since December 8, 2017. On the upside, 0.86 is possibly seen as the next resistance for the pound.

Flash data from IHS Markit showed that Eurozone private sector activity expanded at the fastest pace in nearly 12 years in January.

The composite output index rose unexpectedly to 58.6 from 58.1 in December. The expected reading was 57.9. This was the highest since June 2006.

Following a 2-day low of 1.3380 hit at 3:00 am ET, the pound bounced off to 1.3423 against the Swiss currency. The pound is seen finding resistance around the 1.36 mark.

Looking ahead, U.S. house price index for November, existing home sales for December and Markit's U.S. manufacturing PMI for January are set for release in the New York session.

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