No-deal fear pushes pound to a record low

Will Britain actually extricate itself from the EU

The pound fell today, slumping below US$1.29 for the first time in nearly a year, in a selloff fuelled by investor concern that Britain will crash out of the European Union without a trade deal.

Euro and pound banknotes are seen in front of BREXIT letters in this picture illustration taken April 28, 2017.

Should the pound experience similar losses today, this could see the pound USA dollar exchange rate on track to touch a fresh one-year low by the end of the trading session.

Washington and Beijing announced tit-for-tat tariffs on $16bn worth of goods on Wednesday, edging the two sides closer to a potential trade war and driving traders towards United States dollar in an effort to protect themselves from any fallout. The pound is headed for its worst weekly performance since February.

Fawad Razaqzada, a market analyst at Forex.com, said the data released should "cause a spike in pound volatility".

"We continue to recommend GBP downside until the political impasse is behind us", analysts at Nomura said, forecasting a sterling/dollar at $1.27 and below.

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Investors appear to view a no-deal Brexit as a growing possibility, especially after Britain's Trade Minister Liam Fox suggested over the weekend that the likelihood of a no-deal outcome is as high as 60 per cent.

"If the figures are overall weaker than expected then the pound could resume its slide", he said.

The pound is also down 0.58% against the euro and down 0.86% against the Japanese yen.

Sterling and United Kingdom government bonds will fall further in the run-up to Brexit, even after the pound slumped this week to its lowest in nearly a year, prominent Brexit-supporting British hedge fund manager Crispin Odey said on Thursday.

Mrs May wants to clarify her plans before an European Union leaders' summit in June and to seal a deal on Britain's new relationship with the European Union in October, less than six months before Brexit.

Traders are now preparing for Friday's reading of second-quarter British economic growth numbers to give the pound some possible relief.

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