Market Comment - 20th May 2022

Posted by Stuart PritchardMay 20, 2022

Good morning,

Overnight the People's Bank of China kept their interest rate at 3.7% which was largely expected. However the UK released retail sales numbers that were surprisingly upbeat. Analysts were expecting a month on month contraction of -0.2% but they actually came in at a 1.4% growth. It appears to have been driven by increased sales in alcohol and tobacco which could be a sign that people are deciding to stay at home rather than go out as the cost of living starts to pinch.

This has caused a modest jump in Sterling rates versus the Euro and the Dollar. However the jump isn't significant and the GBP/EUR rate remains in the middle of the mid term range. It's very difficult to assess whether the next move will be to the upside or the downside and besides the ECB's Philip Lane's speech later in the day there may not be a catalyst in the scheduled news. Against the Dollar the Pound still looks fundamentally weak although the rot seems to have halted for the time being as rates have improved in the past week.

Looking ahead it's difficult to see any scheduled news that could significantly move the markets today so it would appear it would only be a breaking geopolitical news story that might cause any volatility.

As ever we look forward to keeping you in the loop and look out for our next update.

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Today’s Economic Calendar

EUR: 13:00 ECB's Philip Lane Speech

EUR: 15:00 Preliminary Consumer Confidence

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