Sun. Sep 20th, 2020

Pound hits 31-month high against the euro on Tory win predictions – business live

Rolling coverage of the latest economic and financial news, as sterling hits €1.184 for the first time since May 2017

4.51pm GMT

And finally, shares in Glencore have closed down 9% at 216p, its lowest level since October 2016.

Worries over the SFO bribery investigation encouraged traders to sell up, says David Madden of CMC Markets.

While the case is hanging over the company, traders are likely to steer clear of the stock

4.01pm GMT

Economics professor Costas Milas has spotted something interesting about the pound (still trading at a seven-month high against the US dollar this afternoon).

Web searches for Boris Johnson used to rise when the pound was becoming more volatile — but currently, the reverse is true.

You are pointing out that sterling hit 1.31 vs the dollar. What has arguably received less attention is the fact that financial markets (in addition to the Canadian Prime Minister) appear to have been“two-faced ”. Academic research has already established that Google search activity predicts financial markets. The popularity of Boris Johnson (proxied by Google searches on the web) coincides with a surge in sterling’s volatility from early 2016 up to and including the summer of 2019. That is, when Boris (first as a Foreign Secretary, then as a backbencher and then as a new Prime Minister) acted as the leading Brexiteer.

Since the beginning of autumn, however, financial markets appear to have changed their mind. Indeed, as the prospect of a new general election together with the prospect of Boris Johnson winning next week’s elections and “getting Brexit done” (despite the very tight deadline of December 2020) increased, the rise in Johnson’s popularity appears to have reduced sterling’s volatility…

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