Resignation and DUP clash weighs down pound

Resignation and DUP clash weighs down pound
Jo Johnson

By Eamon Quinn

Sterling stumbled yesterday as UK transport minister Jo Johnson resigned, saying he wants a new Brexit referendum, and the DUP clashed with prime minister Theresa May over potential plans for the Border.

Against the euro, it fell about 0.3% to 87.25p and traded at $1.2977.

However, The Ftse-100 index which tends to gain when the UK currency weakens, was weighed down with most other stock- markets over fears about the outlook for the world economy.

The Iseq Overall index of Irish shares retreated by almost 0.5%.

The resignation of her transport minister, who is Boris Johnson’s brother but who had nonetheless voted in 2016 for the UK to remain in the EU, may increase the difficulties for May in getting any Brexit agreement through the Commons.

“The week has passed without further progress on a Brexit deal, and the afternoon has become more interesting as Jo Johnson resigns from the government, calling for a second referendum.

“Even if some sort of deal emerges soon, it will still have to clear parliament, and it is by no means certain that such an outcome will transpire,” said Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at online broker IG.

Sterling will take its cue next week from UK economic data but “the main story is still the uncertain fate of the UK’s relationship with Europe”, said Beauchamp.

Fiona Cincotta, senior market analyst at City Index, said the Ftse-100 stocks failed to tap a potential boost from a weaker sterling.

“Brexit optimism which had buoyed the pound over recent sessions was starting to run dry by Friday.

“After a week of rumours and reports that a Brexit deal was just days away, pound traders now want to see evidence. Until there is something more substantial to go on, the pound could remain under pressure,” she said. Falling oil prices added to fears about the world economy.

A selloff in tech stocks added to the fall for US stocks. After falling 62c in London, the price of Brent crude just about kept above $70.

More in this Section

Dublin Airport celebrates 80 years with reflection and expansionDublin Airport celebrates 80 years with reflection and expansion

Netflix chief confirms interest in deal with Harry and MeghanNetflix chief confirms interest in deal with Harry and Meghan

Sajid Javid issues post-Brexit warning to business leadersSajid Javid issues post-Brexit warning to business leaders

Markets jump despite fresh US-China concernsMarkets jump despite fresh US-China concerns


Flexibility naturally declines with age but there’s a lot you can to stay supple through the decades, says Peta Bee.At full stretch: How to stay flexible through the years

Simon Prim is owner of Simon Prim Book Shop, Main Street, Kinsale, Co Cork, which sells second-hand books.‘Kinsale is a welcoming town, and everyone is encouraging’

The Everyman hosts Ronan FitzGibbon’s play about singsongs along the Blackwater, writes Marjorie BrennanA river runs through it: Everyman to play to host to Blackwater Babble

WHEN I think about the kind of child I was, I would say that I was the exact same kind of person that I am as an adult. I have always been fascinated by things that I don’t quite yet understand. I recognise that I hardly understand anything and that most of the world is and always has been so beautifully complex to me.School Daze: Chris Hadfield - I realised at a young age that teachers were fallible

More From The Irish Examiner