Posted by Allison on 12 May 2009, 11:21
So here we are again with another of our weekly looks at the currency markets – and more importantly, how the British pound is faring against other currencies. We know the pound hasn’t been doing so well of late, and that seems to be particularly the case recently.
But last week we did do better than we have recently, with great results against four of the major currencies that we always take a look at. The fifth wasn’t a good result, but considering the effort we put in elsewhere it didn’t seem quite as crucial as it may have done otherwise.
And it does make a change to actually report on some good efforts here and there; after all we have often given disappointing statistics from week to week, ever since the pound started falling late last year.
But as we know, one good week doesn’t necessarily mean that the following week will be a good one as well. Things always go up and down on the currency markets, and if you are hoping for good results this week when you look at your currency converter, you may not necessarily get them. We will do our best though, as we take our regular look at how the pound has been performing against the US dollar, the Euro, and the Hong Kong, New Zealand and Australian dollars.
One thing we should also bear in mind is that the May Day Holiday may have had an impact – so without further ado let’s see what actually did happen last week.
So let’s get started as per usual with a look at how our own currency fared against the mighty US dollar. We actually did well against this currency last week, adding on two and a half cents to the exchange rate. This is certainly something to be proud of, although we know that things don’t always stay that way for very long. Let’s hope we can prove that particular point wrong for once, and grab another good week’s worth of results.
The last figure we had for the previous week was 1.4859, so we were looking for a good start and an increase on the first day if at all possible. And was it possible? Actually yes it was – even if the amount we increased things by was only a tiny one. The final figure on Monday was 1.4862.
But things really kicked into action come Tuesday. We know that we have been edging ever closer to the $1.50 mark for a while, but as soon as we get anywhere near it we seem to fall back just as quickly.
That is why Tuesday’s closing exchange rate came as something of a surprise. Not only did we reach the $1.50 mark, we sailed right over the top of it and finished up on 1.5129. But it was too soon to celebrate. As we know from previous experience, our increases in this area often turn out to be brief. Could we stay over the $1.50 mark, and if so, for how long?
As it happened, the news would seem to be good. Wednesday saw us lose some ground, but we still stayed at 1.5034 for the day. Was there a chance that now we had gone over this threshold, we could stay there for the remainder of the week?
Thursday certainly made it look good, as we finished on an even higher 1.5104 for the day. Now there was just one day left and we were seriously wondering where the end of the week would take us. We have been trying so hard to regain that $1.50 territory and when it finally happened it almost seemed too easy!
And Friday thankfully didn’t let us down. By the time the markets closed we were left with an exchange rate of 1.5072. That meant we had added on just over two cents across the week as a whole, taking us over the threshold we so wanted to reach in style.
So with that great result under our belt, what else could we achieve in this momentous week?
Let’s move on to the Euro now, to see whether we could do any better – or at least achieve an equal amount – over there. Last time we were left on 1.1193, so any kind of increase on that would be a delight to see.
Monday at least did get off to a good start. We saw that by the end of that day we were on 1.1239. It didn’t add a lot on to the exchange rate from the previous week, but the small difference did go in our favour. Could we improve on that still more as the week went on?
Tuesday did indeed give us a better rate as well – we pushed things up to 1.1287 on that day. Was this going to be a week where the exchange rate would just keep going up and up in our direction for once? After weeks of reporting on bad results it would be nice to report on a raft of good ones.
Things did slip back a little on Wednesday, but when we say little we do mean it. The final exchange rate before everyone headed home on that day was 1.1285, so there really was very little to worry about there.
And thankfully we were back to a day of increases on Thursday. It even tipped us over the next point worth noting, leaving us standing on 1.1303 by the end of the day. So with just one day to go, would we keep that new found 1.13 territory, or would we lose it?
As it happened we lost it – leaving us on 1.1227 for the end of the week. That meant there was actually very little change since the week before, although what change there was did go in our favour. We upped things by 0.0034 in total.
So with that success fresh in our minds, let’s move overseas again now and head over to Hong Kong. We managed to improve our situation against this currency by a total of 0.198 the week before, so we were hoping to keep going in the same direction this time too.
We were starting from an exchange rate of 11.516, so let’s see whether we were able to improve on that.
Monday actually saw very little change at all, although the tiny upward movement to 11.518 did go in our direction. So that was a good start. What would come next?
As it happened, there was better news to come. The next day saw a surge upwards as the pound came in to claim 11.725 Hong Kong dollars per pound. Would this continue through the rest of the week, or was that too large an increase to sustain for any length of time?
It seemed as if the latter would turn out to be true, once the following day came to an end. The exchange rate had slipped back to 11.651 by then, although that was still considerably better than Monday, so things were still going in our direction overall.
And Thursday got better once more, as we finished up on 11.706 by the close of play on that day. With just one more day to go until the weekend, we were hoping to maintain this high level of results, but we did slip a little and finished up on 11.681 as everyone headed home for the two day break. That meant we had still added 0.165 to the exchange rate since the previous week though, so we still had plenty to celebrate here.
So we have looked at three different major currencies so far, and we have increased our standing by various degrees against every single one of them. Can we now do the same with the New Zealand dollar and the Australian dollar as well?
Let’s see. We had a great week against the New Zealand dollar last time around, adding on four and a half cents in total. And as things would turn out, there was a big story to come this week – the only question was whether it was a story that we really wanted to know about or not.
We were starting from 2.6168 that we were left with from the previous week, and by the end of Monday we were on 2.6005. So we were starting with a loss, but did that mean this wasn’t going to be our week?
Well we did actually lose more ground on Tuesday, leaving us on 2.5955 by the end of the day, so it wasn’t looking good so far. We have had a good time against this currency of late though, so perhaps we were overdue a bad result for once?
Wednesday’s figure seemed to back that theory up, as the pound fell still further and left us on 2.5795 by the close of play. And there was an even bigger drop to come the next day – Thursday – as we finished up on 2.5302. With just one day left to go it seemed unlikely that we would recover much (if any) ground here, and the week looked set to be a write off as far as the British pound was concerned.
And indeed that would turn out to be true. The final exchange rate before we headed into the weekend was 2.5295 – which meant we had lost a whopping 0.0873 over a single week. Obviously this wasn’t our week as far as going up against the New Zealand dollar was concerned.
So what would happen in Australia? Would the result there mirror the success we had seen elsewhere, or would it mirror the failure we had experienced in New Zealand?
We did lose some ground last time, leaving us on 2.0312 for the week. And Monday’s result did send us in the wrong direction, leaving us on 2.0265. So was this going to be another result similar to the one we had in New Zealand?
Tuesday did actually see some improvement, as the exchange rate went up slightly in our favour, finishing up at 2.0316 by the day’s end. But the rot set in on Wednesday as we slid back again to 2.0220. The only question now was whether that rot would spread and end up giving us a bad result for the week as a whole.
And as it turned out that was exactly what happened. We went down to 1.9883 on Thursday, leaving us just one day to try and put things right. And that wasn’t going to be long enough. We did slow the pace of the rot on Friday, but we still went into the weekend on an exchange rate of 1.9874. That meant we had lost a total of 0.0438. At least it wasn’t quite as severe as New Zealand’s result.
So it was a mixed bag all in all – but at least we did well against arguably the two most important currencies, the US dollar and the Euro.
The Canadian dollar had a good week when it went up against its closest rival. From an exchange rate of 0.8432 on Monday it shot up to 0.8615 by the week’s end.
Not every currency had a great week, and the Chinese yuan was one of them. It bagged 1.1822 Swedish krona at the end of the first day of trading, but four days later that was down to 1.1478.
There aren’t many European countries that aren’t using the Euro, but neither of these two are. And last week the Swiss franc lost ground against the Swedish krona. It started with 7.0671 and by the end of the week it had dropped to 6.9422.
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So there we are for another week. Will we do better against the New Zealand and Australian dollars next week, or will we slip back still further? We’ll let you know.