Sterling Holds Firm amid Doubts over June 21 Reopening

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LONDON, June 7 Reuters Sterling recouped losses against the dollar on Monday morning to hold flat by midday, despite doubts as to whether the government will stick to its plan to fully lift COVID19 lockdown restrictions in England on June 21.

Sterling has been among the topperforming G10 currencies this year as Britains rapid deployment of vaccines spurred expectations of a fast reopening of the economy.

Those hopes have faded somewhat in recent weeks however, as rising cases of the Delta variant of COVID19 first detected in India have led to calls from some scientists to push back the reopening date.

Health minister Matt Hancock said on Sunday it was too soon to say whether the June 21 plan could go ahead.

By 1140 GMT, the pound was flat against the dollar on the day at 1.4166, and up slightly against the euro at 85.91 pence. .

The pound had recovered from a bad recent run against the surging dollar at the end of last week, thanks to softer than expected U.S. jobs data on Friday which knocked the greenback from its perch.

The jobs data was seen as a relief for markets because it showed a pickup in job growth was not strong enough to raise expectations for the U.S. Federal Reserve to tighten its monetary policy any sooner, hurting the dollar.

Speculators decreased their net short dollar positions last week, according to calculations by Reuters and U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data released on Friday.

Britain has emerged as a frontrunner in the global…

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