SHANGHAI, CHINA, November 16, 2017 — Analysts at Shanghai, China-based wealth management boutique Ashton Whiteley believe that increasing political instability and an apparent lack of direction in Brexit negotiations with the European Union will help delay the return of investor confidence in the currency.
The pound, which weakened significantly against the US dollar and the euro in the wake of the landmark EU referendum, has recovered some ground since but remains more vulnerable to news flow on in-fighting within the governing Conservative Party of Prime Minister Theresa May and setbacks in negotiations with the European Union over the terms upon which Britain will leave the 28-member trading bloc.
Ashton Whiteley's analysts cited a recent report of 40 members signing a letter of no confidence in her leadership as just one example of how susceptible the pound is to political uncertainty. The currency fell close to 1% on the news.
Exacerbating the currencies vulnerabilities are the fundamental headwinds including the outlook for trade with the country's largest trading partner, the EU, once Brexit occurs. If negotiators are unable to reach consensus on trade, the UK faces the prospect of having WTO rules governing its trade with Europe and that is also affecting sterling's value on the global forex markets.
Among the other fundamental headwinds facing the UK economy are slowing consumer spending and a housing market boom that appears to have paused. Ashton Whiteley concedes that it is too early to gauge the effect of last week's interest rate hike on the economy but its analysts are agreed that further increases could spell trouble for what are the most indebted private households in the G7.
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