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Market Update

The pound rose against both the dollar and the euro this morning, but futures data showed the market turned net bearish on the pound for the first time since December last year.

The pound was boosted by improving global risk appetite and hopes that lockdown measures may start to be eased as the number of coronavirus cases in the UK appears to slow.

Britain is now seeing a downward trend in the number of people who are in hospital with the new coronavirus, the national medical director of England’s health service said on Sunday.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson returned to work on Monday, a month after he tested positive for COVID-19. He must now find a way to ease the lockdown without triggering a deadly second wave of the virus.

Johnson is expected to announce plans for how the lockdown could be eased as early as this week.

As he returned to Downing Street, Johnson gave no details of when or how the lockdown measures might ease but said that more would be announced in the coming days.

The pound’s long-term prospects are hampered by risks relating to Brexit, which will come into focus again as soon as coronavirus lockdown measures start to ease.

Late on Friday, rating agencies S&P announced that it would keep the UK’s credit rating at “AA” (stable).

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