The British pound has posted losses in the Thursday session, erasing the gains made on Wednesday. In the North American session, the pair is trading at 1.3149, down 0.31% on the day. On the release front, there are no British events on the schedule. In the U.S, durable goods reports rebounded in June, but missed their estimates. Core Durable Goods Orders improved to 0.4%, shy of the estimate of 0.5%. Durable Goods Orders posted a gain of 1.0%, short of the estimate of 3.0%. Unemployment claims climbed to 217 thousand, above the estimate of 215 thousand. On Friday, the U.S releases Advance GDP and UoM Consumer Sentiment.
Retail sales growth remained strong in July with a reading of 20 points, although it was weaker than the sizzling release of 32 points in June, which was largely due to the unseasonable heat wave. However, the indicator is expected to drop in August. On Tuesday, manufacturer orders showed strong growth for a second straight month, with a reading of 11 points. The CBI Manufacturing Council welcomed the strong manufacturing data, but cautioned that “rising trade tensions and ongoing uncertainty over our future trade and customs arrangements are clearly taking their toll on manufacturers’ confidence and investment.” With U.S trade tariffs on EU products threatening to hurt British exports and the manufacturing sector, the markets are keeping a close eye on UK manufacturing indicators.
Trade tensions between the U.S and the European Union have cast a pall over relations between the sides, so the success of EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juckner’s visit to the White House was welcome news. The parties announced on Wednesday that they had agreed to hold off on any further tariffs while talks are ongoing. This is a major concession from Trump, who had threatened to impose tariffs on European car imports. U.S tariffs on European aluminum and steel will remain in place, but Juckner pointed out that the U.S has agreed to reassess these measures. It’s still too early to call the trade war over, with negotiations over trade expected to be contentious.
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