Pound surges sharply boosted by strong inflation data

On Wednesday, Sterling rose and hit 1.3314 against the US Dollar, its highest level in a year, after the release of upbeat UK inflation, adding pressure on the Bank of England to do more to support the currency.

Inflation surged to 2.9%, exceeding forecasts and way above the BoE’s 2% target, as households paid more for fuel and clothing. The British Pound was already supported after a vote in Britain’s parliament to move the government’s EU bill, or repeal bill, to the next stage of a lengthy law-making process.

Meanwhile, Gold steadies as the Dollar remained firm, with Safe-Haven demand for the metal buoyed after US President Donald Trump’s latest comments on tensions over North Korea. Trump said on Tuesday that UN sanctions on North Korea agreed this week were a small step and nothing compared to what would have to happen to deal with the country’s nuclear program.

The Australian Dollar is hovering above 0.80 helped by Westpac consumer confidence index adjusted at 2.5% versus prior -1.2%, and looking past comments from RBA’s Harper. RBA board member Ian Harper said economic growth isn’t strong enough to justify an interest-rate increase. He acknowledged the stronger Aussie could put a brake on growth, but there was a little RBA officials could do given the appreciation is being driven by the weakness of the USD.

Oil holds gains near $48 a barrel as OPEC members are discussing prolonging the cuts ahead of a meeting scheduled for November in Vienna, with a 3 month extension seen as the minimum. The duration will depend on multiple variables, including the level of compliance, the pace of the output recovery in Libya and Nigeria, U.S Shale supply and the strength of global demand.