Market sentiment continues to be positive as we embark on another trading week, helping support the Pound against its peers. The speed of which the UK has rolled out COVID-19 vaccinations is also helping to prop up Sterling. It was confirmed by the Health Secretary yesterday that 75% of all people aged 80 and over have now received their first COVID-19 jab. Interestingly, Matt Hancock noted that the UK has given out more vaccines in the last three days than France has in total.
Despite cable gaining 0.7% on Thursday and reaching close to 3-year highs, on Friday the pair struggled throughout most of the session, finding it difficult to gain any substantial momentum. GBPUSD opened on Friday at 1.3666, and in spite of some pressure, was able to close above that mark, finishing last week at 1.3683.
GBPEUR also experienced volatility on Friday, but unlike cable the pair was unable to finish above where it had opened. The pair started the day off at 1.1238 and closed the week at 1.1235.
As for EURUSD, the pair was able to make subtle gains on Friday. The pair opened the session at 1.2160 and closed at 1.2178.
In an interview with Sky News yesterday, Mr Hancock said that the NHS continues to face “enormous” pressure despite the “early evidence” indicating that tough lockdown restrictions have helped “bring cases down”. The Health Secretary reiterated his message that people “should be worried enough… about this pandemic to follow the rules and it is just so important that people do”. Mr Hancock also defended the 12-week gap between two Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine doses, claiming the policy will help “save lives”. Deputy chair of the Joint Committee of Vaccination and Immunisation, Professor Anthony Harnden, supported this statement, noting that the data from the Pfizer study had been “carefully examined” and they have concluded the second does can be delayed to 12 weeks with little impact on efficacy. Harnden said that the jab is “89% effective… in the period from 15 to 21 days”.