Pound euro exchange rate: GBP steadies as French consumer confidence remains downbeat

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The pairing has remained rangebound after the French consumer confidence figures for April came in at a disappointing 96, despite expectations that the figure would have improved to 97. In the UK, Jeremy Hunt, the Foreign Secretary, has alarmed Sterling traders by claiming that a no-deal Brexit would be preferable to staying in the EU. Mr Hunt said: “As far as Brexit is concerned, my view is very straightforward: we have to leave, we have to leave quickly, we have to leave cleanly. “I would always prefer to leave with a deal because I think there would be disruption without a deal, and it’s very difficult to predict what that disruption would be.”

Meanwhile, more controversy is rattling confidence in the Conservative Party following a leak from the National Security Council (NSC) meeting on Tuesday about the Chinese telecom giant Huawei’s plans to supply hardware for the UK’s 5G network. 

A number of Conservative MPs have categorically denied that they were the source of the leak, however it is causing further tensions within the party alongside ongoing political turmoil over Brexit. 

Gus O’Donnell, the former cabinet secretary, said the leak was a “complete outrage”.

He said: “If I were Cabinet Secretary and I thoroughly applaud what my successor Mark Sedwill has done is to say ‘look, this is just beyond the pale’ – this is really important for the country, these issues are massively important.”

The euro, meanwhile, remains flat following yesterday’s publication of the Spanish unemployment survey for the first-quarter, which increased above expectations. 

Many single currency traders were relieved by the European Central Bank’s economic bulletin which stated that recent US tariffs on Eurozone exports had left the bloc’s economy relatively unscathed.  

The pound euro exchange rate will remain sensitive to Brexit developments into next week, and any signs that Theresa May will go-ahead with a fourth ‘meaningful vote’ on her deal could buoy confidence in Sterling on hopes of a breakthrough. 

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