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Range of the week: 1.2162 - 1.2276 (20 month high)
Variance of the week on £10k=€114
Variance of the week on £1,000pm=€11.40

Only one piece of news to start this weeks update....

The UK is officially back in recession. UK GDP figures released this morning showed that the UK economy shrunk by -0.2% in the 1st quarter of this year. That follows a 0.3% at the end of 2011 and has pulled sterling back down from the 20 month high it posted yesterday (1.2276) meaning we have technically gone into a double-dip recession.

We started the week with the French elections in the headlines. After the 1st round the Socialist Francois Hollande taking a lead. He will now go head-to-head with current President Nicolas Sarkozy in the second round at the start of May. Hollande has promised to renegotiate the EU fiscal growth pact (the one Cameron didn’t sign the UK up to last Autumn). The political front and unity embodied by Sarkozy and Angela Merkel of Germany was key to Euro strength. Hollande is being tipped with a very real chance of winning, his polices are seen as less favorable by the markets, with news of his lead sending markets down on Monday morning. Story here

Following the political theme this week, George Osborne came under attack as The IMF (International Monetary Fund) have announced an increase in their ‘firepower’ to £247bn, with the UK contributing £10bn. Christine Lagarde says that the money is not earmarked for any country but the money will surely end up going to countries in the Eurozone. Is it good money after bad? It is very difficult to justify a £10 billion expenditure with no immediate and obvious returns, in the UK’s current economic climate.

And finally a country that has stayed relatively under the radar through out the Euro-Zone crisis is Holland. This week their goverment resigned amid rows after being unable to agreed their budget.

Range of the week:1.6075 – 1.6169
Variance of the week on £10k= $94
Variance if the Week on £1,000pm=$9.40

Later today we have the US Feds interest rate decision, with rates widely expected to be held. This is then followed by a press conference with Ben Bernanke. As always, the worlds most influential central banker can always move markets if he says something unexpected, so worth mentioning to any clients looking to trade within the next 24 hours.

Range of the week: 1.5550 – 1.5728
Variance of the week on £10k= AU$178
Variance of the week on £1,000pm = $17.80

Australian CPI came out this week at 1.6% down from expectations of 2.2%. This is their key measure of inflation and has now all but sealed the fact that the RBA are likely to cut rates to 4% in their next interest rate meeting. The AUD was sold off quite strongly after this announcement came out, as the rate cut become more likely.

Range of the week: 1.9749 – 1.9916
Variance of the week on £10k=NZ$167
Variance of the week on £1,000pm =$16.70

Later tonight we have the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s interest rate decision, these are widely expected to be left on hold at 2.5%.

Range of the week: 12.4680 – 12.6940
Variance of the week on £10k=ZAR2, 260
Variance of the week on £1,000pm =ZAR226

No major news or data for the week so far

Range of the week: 1.5852 – 1.6064
Variance of the week: on £10k=$212
Variance of the week on £1,000pm =$21.20

No major news or data for the week so far.
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