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Forex News: Pound Higher Despite Cooling UK Inflation

Pound Higher Despite Cooling UK Inflation

06/19/2019 - 05:46:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - The pound was higher against its most major counterparts in the early European session on Wednesday, despite the release of a data showing a slowdown in UK inflation to the central bank target in May.

Data from the Office for National Statistics showed that consumer price inflation came in at 2 percent in May versus 2.1 percent in April. The rate matched expectations. The annual decline was largely driven by air fares and falling car prices.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices gained 0.3 percent versus 0.4 percent rise a year ago.

Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcoholic beverages and tobacco, also slowed in May, to 1.7 percent from 1.8 percent in the previous month.

The consumer prices index including owner occupiers' housing costs advanced 1.9 percent annually in May, down from 2.0 percent in April.

Separate data showed that factory gate inflation slowed to 1.8 percent from. 2.1 percent in April. But this was above the forecast of 1.7 percent.

Month-on-month, output prices rose 0.3 percent for the second straight month compared to expectations of 0.2 percent.

Further, input price inflation eased sharply to 1.3 percent from 4.5 percent in April. Nonetheless, this was above the forecast of 0.8 percent. On month, input prices remained flat versus the expected growth of 0.2 percent.

In a separate communiqué, the ONS said house price inflation slowed to 1.4 percent in April from 1.6 percent in March. The lowest annual growth was in London, where prices fell 1.2 percent over a year ago.

Investors waited for the outcome of the FOMC meeting amid increased expectations for dovish remarks.

With trade tensions threatening global growth, it is expected that the U.S. central bank would follow the lead of the European Central Bank and open the door to future rate cuts.

The Bank of England will announce its policy decision on Thursday.

The BoE is likely to keep policy on hold, given continued Brexit uncertainty.

The currency has been trading higher against its most major counterparts in the Asian session, as Boris Johnson remained the front runner in the second round of voting in the U.K. leadership race.

The pound appreciated to a 2-day high of 1.2580 against the greenback, up from a low of 1.2543 seen at 3:15 am ET. The pound may test resistance around the 1.27 level, if it rises again.

Following a decline to 0.8927 at 3:15 am ET, the pound reversed direction and advanced to a 2-day high of 0.8907 against the euro. The currency is seen finding resistance around the 0.88 region.

Data from Destatis showed that Germany's producer price inflation slowed in May.

Producer prices climbed 1.9 percent year-on-year in May, after a 2.5 percent increase in April. Economists had expected a 2.2 percent rise.

The pound rose back to 136.32 against the Japanese yen, heading to pierce a 2-day high of 136.49 touched at 7:45 pm ET. The pound is poised to face around resistance the 138.00 region.

Data from the Ministry of Finance showed that Japan had a merchandise trade deficit of 967.1 billion yen in May.

That exceeded expectations for a shortfall of 1,207.0 billion yen following the 110.9 billion yen deficit in April.

On the flip side, the pound was trading lower at 1.2550 against the franc, following a 2-day high of 1.2585 set at 10:30 pm ET. On the downside, 1.23 is possibly seen as the next support level for the pound.

Looking ahead, Canada consumer inflation for May is due in the New York session.

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi will give closing remarks at the ECB Forum on Central Banking in Sintra at 10:00 am ET.

At 2:00 pm ET, the Fed announces its decision on interest rate. Economists widely expect it to keep federal funds rate at 2.25 - 2.50 percent.

For comments and feedback: contact editorial@rttnews.com

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