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Posted June 17th, 2011 by Charles Purdy

EUR/GBP Rate & Comments for 17th June 2011

EURO/GBP - 1.1380

Sterling fell against the US dollar on Thursday after figures were released that showed UK retail sales fell by more than expected, adding further weight to calls for the Bank of England to keep interest rates on hold. Higher fuel costs and ongoing uncertainty over employment prospects kept consumer spending in check. Data showed a 1.4% drop in sales since April – beating estimates of a 0.6% drop. However, April’s figures could have been much higher than normal due to ‘Royal Wedding Fever’ and the numerous bank holidays. Sterling did however jump against the euro, hitting €1.1460/£1 briefly as European officials failed to reassure investors that they were close to a second bail out of Greece.

In the euro zone, the euro plummeted yesterday hitting a record low against the Swiss franc and a three week low against the US dollar as investors fled to safe-haven assets on mounting concerns Greece’s problems are far from resolution. In a week that saw Greece’s credit rating cut to CCC – near junk status – Greek and Portuguese bond yields climbed to record highs. It has also been a week of disagreement between Germany and the European Central Bank over the best way to deal with the Greek crisis, which has also added to the euro’s demise. It has dropped by 4.2% since June 7th. There is no real data out today, but call in to take advantage of any volatility.

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