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CurrencyShares British Pound Sterling Trust ETF (FXB)

  • Apr. 19, 2013, 12:11 PM
    The U.K. loses its AAA credit rating from Fitch, the agency downgrading to AA+ with stable outlook. The move is somewhat expected given Fitch had placed the country on negative watch a month ago. "The downgrade ... primarily reflects a weaker economic and fiscal outlook." Already lower on the session, cable sheds a few more pips, FXB -0.2%.
  • Apr. 17, 2013, 4:40 AM
    The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee again voted unanimously to keep interest rates at 0.5% at a meeting earlier this month and 6-3 against more quantitative easing, the minutes show. As in February and March, Governor Mervyn King was among those wanting the bank to increase the program by another £25B to £400B. The pound, which was already lower, is -0.3% vs dollar. (PR)
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  • Apr. 9, 2013, 5:01 AM
    U.K. trade deficit in goods widens to £9.42B in February from £8.17B in January and vs consensus of £8.55B; total trade deficit widens to £3.64B from £2.49B. Exports -1.1% M/M, imports +1.7%. The largest drop in exports was in goods to non-EU countries (4.7%). Following trade and industrial production data, pound is +0.4% vs the dollar, while the FTSE pairs earlier gains and is +0.4%. (PR)
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  • Apr. 5, 2013, 12:31 PM
    The U.K. holds onto its AAA rating from S&P, but the outlook remains negative, meaning a one-in-three chance of a downgrade during the next two years. "We could lower the rating if we were to conclude that the pace and extent of fiscal consoldiation has slowed beyond what we currently expect." Cable (FXB) snoozes through the news, remaining +0.6%.
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  • Apr. 4, 2013, 7:24 AM
    Cable (FXB) adds a few pips, but remains under pressure following the BOE leaving policy unchanged, -0.3% vs. the dollar (along with all other global assets, it's higher vs. the yen). Some had thoughts of the bank restarting its QE program, but that might have to wait until Mark Carney takes the reigns in July.
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  • Apr. 2, 2013, 4:36 AM
    U.K. manufacturing PMI edges up to 48.3 in March from 47.9 in February; Q1 average PMI slips to 49 from 49.2 in Q4. "These weak numbers may be sufficient to tip the balance and convince more members of the MPC to consider additional QE at their meeting next week," says Markit. (PR)
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  • Mar. 27, 2013, 6:09 AM
    Various markets dive after the BOE spells out the continued massive risks to British banks. Half of the £25B that banks must raise this year has been factored into their capital-raising plans. All in all, major banks and building societies face a £50B reduction in their regulatory capital, although HSBC (HBC) doesn't face a shortfall. FTSE 100 -0.1%, S&P futures -0.2%. (PR)
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  • Mar. 22, 2013, 2:13 PM
    The U.K.'s AAA rating is placed on negative watch by Fitch, indicating the heightened probability of a near-term cut. The move is made following the U.K. estimating its government debt load will peak at a higher level and at a later time than originally forecast. Fitch expects its review of the situation to be complete by April's end. Sterling (FXB) dipped on the news, but has since recovered those lost pips.
  • Mar. 21, 2013, 6:21 AM
    The U.K. budget deficit drops its lowest level in February in five years, falling to £2.76B last month from £11.8B a year earlier and vs consensus of £8B. Britain's finances were boosted by proceeds from the Bank of England from its bond-buying scheme and the sale of mobile-phone spectrum. (PR)
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  • Mar. 21, 2013, 6:13 AM
    U.K. retail sales +2.5% Y/Y in February vs -0.5% in January and consensus of +0.5%. On month, sales +2.1% vs -0.7% and +0.5%. The growth was due to consumers returning to shops after heavy snow in January. The figures come a day after the U.K. announced measures that could support further consumer spending. The pound jumps and is now +0.5% vs the dollar. (PR)
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  • Mar. 20, 2013, 9:06 AM
    More on Osborne's monetary activism: The Chancellor speaks of an "updated remit" for the Bank of England in which the official inflation target would remain at 2%, but "intermediate thresholds" would allow the MPC to more or less ignore it (it's done a pretty good job of that already). This could set the stage for GDP-targeting at the BOE. Sterling (FXB) is moving about quite a bit, but currently flat on the session. The FTSE (EWU) +0.2%.
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  • Mar. 20, 2013, 8:49 AM
    Cable (FXB) dives as U.K. Treasury Chancellor Osborne slashes the government forecast for 2013 GDP growth to 0.6% from 1.2% made just 3 months ago. With fiscal tightening still in force, Osborne says the government will go further on monetary activism.
  • Mar. 20, 2013, 5:49 AM
    The Bank of England's monetary policy committee voted unanimously to keep interest rates on hold at a meeting earlier this month and 6-3 against more quantitative easing. As in February, Governor Mervyn King was among those wanting the bank to increase the program by another £25B to £400B. The pound jumps vs the dollar and is now +0.3%. (PR)
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  • Mar. 12, 2013, 12:47 PM
    "QE has successfully turned the bond vigilantes into bond zombies," writes Mike Riddell. With central banks having an unlimited bid in fixed income,  the discipline enforcers turn instead to currency markets and index-linkers (TIP), and the world's worst-performing currencies this year are the yen (FXY) and the pound (FXB) as the stimulus efforts of the BOJ and BOE trump that of the Fed.
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  • Mar. 12, 2013, 10:47 AM
    A kind word for the drubbed pound is said by the WSJ's Nick Hastings, who points out the BOE may be chatting about QE, but may well decide not to offer a new round. There'a also the budget next week, and - with elections set for 2015 - Treasury Chancellor Osborne may back off austerity pledges and serve up growth proposals. FXB -0.4%.
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  • Mar. 12, 2013, 9:14 AM
    One gauge of U.K. inflation expectations rises to its highest level since September 2008, with the break-even rate - the difference between nominal government paper and index-linkers - rising to 3.35%. The pound (FXB) continues to slide, -0.4% to $1.4859. Any easing Mark Carney is planning on when takes over the BOE in July may have already been done for him.
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FXB vs. ETF Alternatives
FXB Description
CurrencyShares British Pound Sterling Trust is designed to track the price of the British Pound Sterling net of Trust expenses, which are expected to be paid from interest earned on the deposited British Pound Sterlings.
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