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Friday, January 24, 2020

Breaking: U.K. PMIs Better Than Expected, But Pound Falls

© Reuters.  © Reuters.

U.K. economic expectations improved in January, with the flash Purchasing Managers Indexes from Markit showing activity rising to a 16-month high in the wake of December's general election.

Manufacturing PMI for January came in at 49.8 from 47.5 previously, while the dominant Services PMI was at 52.9 from 50.0. The Composite number came in at 52.4 from 49.3, back in expansionary territory. All the numbers were comfortably ahead of consensus forecasts.

These figures are likely to have added importance as they are the first piece of leading data to be released following the country's General Election. The Bank of England holds its latest rate-setting meeting next week, and the decision to ease monetary conditions once more appears to be on a knife's edge given the dovish comments from a series of MPC members, including Governor Mark Carney.

However, the pound fell on the report. By 4:40 AM ET (0940 GMT) it was at $1.3127, down around a quarter of a cent from immediately before the release. EUR/GBP likewise ticked up to 0.8409.

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