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Sterling was little changed versus the euro

Yesterday’s UK retail sales showed a fall of 0.3% in September, with the quarter-on-quarter growth rate slowing to only 0.3% in Q3 compared with 1.6% in Q2. The pound has gradually fallen against both the dollar and euro ahead of today’s GDP figures as markets are expecting the pace of growth slowed in the third quarter.

Sterling was little changed versus the euro. Gross domestic product rose 0.7 percent in the three months through September, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey, after expanding 0.9 percent in the second quarter. Investors have been pushing back bets on when the Bank of England will increase interest rates after minutes of the policy maker’s most recent meeting showed they saw greater risks to U.K. momentum from a slump in the euro-area economy.

For the ECB, success as the euro area’s financial supervisor may begin this weekend with a few failures. At noon in Frankfurt on Oct. 26, investors will learn which of the currency bloc’s 130 biggest banks fell short in the ECB’s year-long examination of their asset strength and ability to withstand economic turbulence. After two previous stress tests run by the European Banking Authority didn’t reveal problems at lenders that later failed, the ECB has staked its reputation on getting this exercise right.

MORNING MARKET RATES:

GBPEUR 1.2682
GBPUSD 1.6034
EURUSD 1.2642
GBPSEK 11.644
GBPAED 5.8875
GBPAUD 1.8280
EURGBP 0.7883
GBPJPY 173.43
GBPTHB 51.927