The pound weakened against its major opponents in early European deals on Friday, after a data showed that U.K. retail sales declined more than expected in December.
Data from the Office for National Statistics showed that retail sales volume dropped by more-than-expected 1.5 percent in December from November, when it grew 1 percent. Economists had forecast a 1 percent fall.
Similarly, sales excluding auto fuel decreased 1.6 percent, in contrast to November’s 1.1 percent increase. Sales were expected to fall 1 percent.
Meanwhile, European shares rose as optimism about economic growth and corporate earnings helped investors shrug off concerns about a potential U.S. government shutdown.
The pound dropped against its major rivals in the Asian session, with the exception of the greenback.
Having advanced to 0.8802 against the euro at 5:00 pm ET, the pound reversed direction and edged down to 0.8827. The next possible support for the pound is seen around the 0.90 mark.
Data from the European Central Bank showed that the euro area current account surplus increased in November after falling for two straight months.
The current account surplus rose to EUR 32.5 billion from EUR 30.3 billion in October.
Pulling away from an early high of 1.3329 against the franc, the pound declined to a 2-day low of 1.3284. Continuation of the pound’s downtrend may see it challenging support around the 1.28 area.
Figures from the Federal Statistical Office showed that Switzerland’s producer and import prices increased at a steady pace in December.
Producer and import prices climbed 1.8 percent year-on-year, the same rate as seen in November.
The pound reversed from an early high of 154.41 against the yen, edging down to 153.79. If the pound falls further, 152.00 is likely seen as its next support level.
On the flip side, the pound extended rise to a 2-day high of 1.3945 against the greenback. On the upside, 1.44 is possibly seen as the next resistance for the pound.
Looking ahead, Canada manufacturing sales for November and University of Michigan’s preliminary consumer sentiment index for January are set for release in the New York session.
The material has been provided by InstaForex Company – www.instaforex.com