Oct 18, 2019

The ups and downs of the British pound

Data: Money.net; Chart: Axios Visuals

The British pound jumped to a fresh 5-month high on news that a Brexit deal had been reached between U.K. and European Commission negotiators, but petered out nearly as quickly after the Northern Irish Democratic Unionist Party said it would not vote for the deal.

The big picture: Sterling fell below $1.28 before steadying again, closing closer to its highs on the day than its lows as investors retained some optimism.

  • "We think that the gains in sterling are sustainable, because even though Prime Minister Boris Johnson faces an uphill battle to collect all of the votes needed from lawmakers to seal the deal, members of Parliament won't want to risk another 3 years of policy gridlock or worse — an unruly no-deal Brexit," Kathy Lien, managing director of FX strategy at BK Asset Management, said.
  • "This is the closest we've been to an orderly exit in years and probably the best deal they'll get from the EU."

Go deeper

Everything you need to know about Brexit

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

On June 23, 2016, the United Kingdom shocked the world and voted to “Brexit,” or leave the European Union. After more than three years of uncertainty and fractured politics, the U.K. officially exited the EU on Jan. 31, 2020.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Oct 29, 2019 - World

British pound remains strong despite Brexit drama

Photo: Jim Dyson/Getty Images

The British pound slipped but was much less volatile than expected after Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Brexit deal was rejected by Parliament on Saturday.

What's happening: The pound fell about 0.7%, but remained above $1.29, near a 5-month high. Big banks in London called in extra staff in anticipation of major market moves that didn't materialize after the first Saturday sitting in the House of Commons in 37 years.

Go deeperArrowOct 21, 2019

Nigel Farage says Brexit extension would be better than Boris Johnson's deal

Photo: Peter Summers/Getty Images

Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage told Sky News on Sunday that he'd prefer to extend the Brexit deadline past Oct. 31 in order to hold a general election than see Parliament pass the divorce deal struck by the EU and Prime Minister Boris Johnson last week.

"This is a rotten deal. ... I do understand because of Brexit fatigue and anger in the country the temptation to vote for it. But it is nothing more than Brexit in name only, it will not solve anything. This will not end things."
Go deeperArrowOct 20, 2019