Pound Stumbles following NHS Chief’s Comments

Pound (GBP) Slips as Covid Optimism Wanes 

The Pound (GBP) fell on Friday after Chris Hopson, CEO of NHS Providers, said that the UK must be ready to swiftly impose restrictions should Covid hospitalisations surge. 

His comments came alongside a warning from Professor Peter Openshaw, a leading respiratory physician, who said that the current rise in infections could overwhelm the NHS ‘quite quickly’. 

Turning to today, Covid news may continue to drive movement in the Pound. Could Sterling climb on renewed Omicron optimism? 

Euro (EUR) Gains as USD Retreats 

The Euro (EUR) firmed against most of its peers on Friday thanks to its negative correlation with a weakening US Dollar (USD). 

However, tighter Covid restrictions in some European countries limited EUR’s gains. 

This morning, German retail sales data for November showed an unexpected rise. Germany’s unemployment data has also beat forecasts, and could therefore prompt an upside in EUR. 

US Dollar (USD) Mixed as Market Mood Wavers 

The US Dollar wavered on Friday as a mixed market mood caused some turbulence around the safe-haven currency. 

In addition, falling US Treasury yields offset the tailwind from expectations of a Federal Reserve rate hike next year. 

Looking ahead, the ISM manufacturing PMI and JOLTs job openings report could give the ‘Greenback’ a boost this afternoon. 

Canadian Dollar (CAD) Firms despite Falling Oil Prices 

The oil-sensitive Canadian Dollar (CAD) made gains against many of its rivals on Friday, despite softer crude prices. 

In today’s session, CAD investors will be keeping an eye on both the oil market and Canada’s latest manufacturing PMI, which economists expect to show improvement. 

Australian Dollar (AUD) Gains amid Omicron Optimism 

The Australian Dollar (AUD) ticked higher in overnight trade, as a markets chose to focus on positive Omicron news, thereby boosting the demand of the risk-sensitive ‘Aussie’. 

New Zealand Dollar (NZD) Trends Higher amid Risk-On Market Mood 

The New Zealand Dollar (NZD) also edged higher against many of its peers overnight as an upbeat market mood boosted the perceived riskier ‘Kiwi’. 

Samuel Birnie

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