Stories

The British pound rose by the most in nearly 2 years yesterday

British pound notes lay on top of the EU flag.
Photo: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The British pound rose by the most in nearly 2 years on Wednesday after lawmakers voted down the latest Brexit proposal — an amendment to leave the EU with no agreement in place.

The big picture: As the deadline has closed in, investors have increased rather than decreased bullish bets on the pound. The CFTC reported last week speculators had cut net short positions on sterling by half since September 2018 and reduced positions by about $1.5 billion since the week of Dec. 21.

Even as the dollar has risen against major currencies around the globe so far this year, sterling has gained 4% on the greenback.

Where it stands: The value of the pound sank after the Brexit vote in June 2016 from around $1.50 to $1.32 almost immediately and has ebbed and flowed since, now hovering right around that level.

The bottom line: It may simply be that traders got it right when Britain voted to leave in the first place and nothing has materially changed since then.

Go deeper: Everything else you need to know about Brexit