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UK Retail Sales Rebound, Pound Steadies

UK Retail Sales Rebound, Pound Steadies

Martin Essex, MSTA, Analyst

Talking Points

- UK retail sales rose by 0.6% month/month in June after a revised 1.1% fall in May.

- That will give some ammunition to the hawks on the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee and help to underpin the Pound.

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UK retail sales increased by 0.6% month/month in June after May’s 1.1% fall, suggesting that the important consumer sector is now helping to boost the UK’s sluggish economic growth. That will lead to further calls for a tightening of monetary policy, although the overall weakness of the economy and falling inflation mean that a withdrawal of stimulus is still many months away.

Retail sales were expected to increase by only 0.4% and, adding to the brighter picture, the drop in May was revised to 1.1% rather than the 1.2% fall previously reported.

In response, GBPUSD steadied after weakening earlier in the session to below the psychologically important 1.30 level.

Chart: GBPUSD Five-Minute Timeframe (July 20, 2017)

UK Retail Sales Rebound, Pound Steadies

Chart by IG

The improvement in retail sales last month could help lift UK inflation, which fell by more than expected to 2.6% from 2.9%, according to the latest data that caused a sharp selloff in the Pound.

--- Written by Martin Essex, Analyst and Editor

To contact Martin, email him at martin.essex@ig.com

Follow Martin on Twitter @MartinSEssex

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