The Pound to Australian Dollar exchange rate found itself making small gains today, as mixed employment data from the UK couldn’t push Sterling higher.
At the time of writing the pair are currently trading at around AU$1.7814.
Pound (GBP) Muted by UK Employment Data
Despite the UK government’s optimistic plan to ease the country out of lockdown, which was announced yesterday and cheered by markets, the Pound has found itself muted today.
This morning saw the release of UK unemployment rate data from December of 2020 which confirmed forecasts and edged higher to 5.1%, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported.
Jonathan Althow, deputy national statistician at the ONS, commented on the data:
‘The latest monthly tax figures show tentative early signs of the labour market stabilising, with a small increase in the numbers of employees paid through payroll over the last couple of months – though there are still over 700,000 fewer people employed than before the start of the coronavirus pandemic.’
‘Our survey shows that the unemployment rate has had the biggest annual rise since the financial crisis.’
Chancellor Rishi Sunak who is expected to announce his budget next week and extend the furlough scheme beyond May, also commented on the report saying:
‘I know how incredibly tough the past year has been for everyone, and every job lost is a personal tragedy. At the Budget next week I will set out the next stage of our Plan for Jobs, and the support we’ll provide through the remainder of the pandemic and our recovery.’
Australian Dollar (AUD) Retreats on Global-Risk Aversion Positive on Global-Risk Sentiment
The Australian Dollar found itself retreating despite gaining overnight as global-risk aversion increases and investors take to safe-haven currencies like the US Dollar (USD).
Market sentiment has become more cautious ahead of Fed Chair Jerome Powell speech to Congress.
This has left AUD struggling as USD has strengthened on the risk-off mood.
Limiting AUD losses however is the news that Australia will begin its coronavirus vaccine rollout on Monday with the Pfizer vaccine. The countries medical regulator also granted provisional approval for the AstraZeneca vaccine which is set to be delivered next month.
Pound to Australian Dollar Outlook: UK Lockdown Developments in Focus
Pound investors will be looking towards Bank of England’s (BoE) Andy Haldane’s speech on the UK’s inflation outlook this Friday, with any further hawkish commentary surrounding the UK economy and its recovery supporting Sterling.
In lieu of any notable data coming from Australia in the coming days, AUD investors will be keeping an eye on any commodity-driven, and global risk movement. With an increased risk-on mood proving positive for AUD.
The GBP/AUD exchange rate will also be moved by any further coronavirus developments, with the UK’s vaccine rollout continuing to be a success providing extra support to GBP.