Market news

6 May 2021

European session review: GBP weakens after the announcement of BoE’s policy update

TimeCountryEventPeriodPrevious valueForecastActual
08:00EurozoneECB Economic Bulletin    
08:30United KingdomPurchasing Manager Index ServicesApril56.360.161.0
09:00AustraliaRBA Assist Gov Debelle Speaks    
09:00EurozoneRetail Sales (YoY)March-1.5%9.6%12%
09:00EurozoneRetail Sales (MoM)March4.2%1.5%2.7%
11:00United KingdomAsset Purchase Facility 875875875
11:00United KingdomBoE Interest Rate Decision 0.1%0.1%0.1%
11:00United KingdomBank of England Minutes    

GBP retreated against most of its major rivals in the European session on Thursday after the announcement of the outcomes of the Bank of England's (BoE) latest monetary policy meeting.

At its May gathering, the BoE's policymakers decided to leave the bank rate unchanged at 0.10% and maintained the asset purchase program at GBP895 billion, as widely expected. The central bankers also provided upbeat economic forecasts but did not send a clear message of trimming the pace of monthly purchases in its quantitative easing (QE) program. This disappointed some market participants, who had expected such a “game-changing” decision from the British central bank that could mark the beginning of the normalizing moves by the central banks around the world.

In a market notice, setting out the details of the BoE’s planned gilt purchases, the Bank said that “the pace of these continuing purchases could now be slowed somewhat”. However, it added that “this operational decision should not be interpreted as a change in the stance of monetary policy” and “as measured by the target stock of purchased assets, that stance remained unchanged”.

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