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Currency report 280812
28 August 2012

After the UK bank holiday, we head into the last week of August with a bleak scenario for the UK economy and perhaps therefore the Pound.

This morning's survey showing the important service sector shrank between June and August added to Friday's confirmation of the continuing recession. Although Friday's revised GDP showed a slight improvement, the 0.5% contraction is still way below the government's hopes for a quick solution and a return to growth seems a long way off.

Thankfully for those of you sending payments in Euros or US Dollars, both these currencies have so far remained weak too. Following meetings with Greek PM Samaras last week, Angela Merkel tried on Sunday to calm a growing Eurozone argument, after the Bundesbank again commented against ECB plans to buy bonds, and a leading German politician said Greece should leave the single currency next year. With the September decisions about Greece's bailout looming, there still appears to be no common policy emerging from Germany, let alone the rest of Europe, as to what will happen next.

The US Dollar also weakened last week on expectations that the Federeal Reserve may pump more money into the economy soon, giving us the best rates for buying Dollars for 3 months, and the South African Rand hits its cheapest against sterling since 2008.

How long these rates can last is of course unknown, but continued economic gloom in the UK will surely start to manifest itself in a weaker Pound at some point soon.

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