Greece Moves Closer to Austerity Vote

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The euro weakened on Friday as the positivity surrounding the EU’s support for Greece faded amid still rising bond yields. That said there was a lot of news surrounding the Greek situation over the weekend from the positive (China reiterating that it would continue to buy Greek bonds) to the negative (a warning from the Greek deputy PM that the vote on austerity measures may be closer than may be comfortable) and the strange (George Soros saying in yesterday’s Sunday Times that he expects one country, as yet we’re not sure who, to leave the Eurozone at some point). EURUSD is down 0.35% this morning while GBPEUR is 0.27% higher.

The key thing for asset markets this week is of course the Greek vote on those pesky austerity measures that we expect on either Wednesday or Thursday. The likelihood is that it will pass following the vote of confidence we had last week. Regardless of the vote we expect a fair bit of protest and rioting in that part of the world and risk rallies to be sold in the lead-up to the vote.

GBPUSD has remained weak as the dollar ratchets up the pressure. This is after heavy share price falls on Friday and further declines in Asia over the course of this morning’s session. The dollar also benefited from US Q1 GDP being revised higher to an annualised level of 1.9% from 1.8% reported in the previous estimate, on the back of revisions to the change in inventories as well as net exports. This does not stymie the fact that growth is slowing in the US and, although Treasury Secretary Geithner expects that 2/3 of it to be down to temporary factors.

We kick off the week with a quiet data sheet with US personal income and spending the key number today. Both are expected to be weak on the back of poor vehicle sales and energy consumption.

Indicative Rates Sell Buy
GBPEUR 1.1257 1.1283
GBPUSD 1.5952 1.5977
EURUSD 1.4155 1.4173
GBPJPY 128.87 129.15
GBPAUD 1.5281 1.5307
GBPNZD 1.9862 1.9892
GBPCAD 1.5785 1.5814
NZDUSD 0.8025 0.8089
GBPZAR 11.03 11.08
USDZAR 6.9113 6.9409
GBPPLN 4.4908 4.5171
EURJPY 114.36 114.63

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Greece Moves Closer to Austerity Vote

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