Sterling lost over 0.5% against the dollar, but remained steady against the EUR in early trading. GBP/USD has fallen for 4 consecutive days amid dollar demand as U.S bond yields rise. Speaking on Sky news this morning, Nadhim Zahawi minister for vaccine deployment said Britain will have offered Covid vaccines for those in priority categories, around 15 million people, by the middle of next month. Seven new mass vaccine centres will open across England as part of the governments new vaccine delivery plan. BOE Governor Andrew Bailey who last week said the UK should not submit to EU financial services rules to get a better deal is speaking later today.
EUR/USD fell below 1.2200 this morning, its lowest level in 3 weeks. Germany reported 12,500 new virus cases this morning, as Chancellor Merkel warned that the coming weeks may be the hardest phase of the pandemic. ECB president Christine Lagarde speaks later this afternoon.
Despite the disappointing employment data released on Friday, the dollar has continued to rise against all major currency pairings. Higher returns on 10 year bonds, which soared over 1% on Friday, have been supporting the greenback. The Federal Reserve Bank’s vice-chairman Richard Clarida said on Friday that he wants to leave the current pace of bond -buying, so for now the central bank is tolerating higher returns on treasuries allowing the dollar to rally.