Pound Extends Losses, UK and EU Still Far Apart in Talks

The Brexitbattered pound extended its losses against the dollar and the euro on Thursday, as investors became more cautious about the risk of Britain and the EU failing to agree on a Brexit deal, with just three weeks until the Dec. 31 deadline.

The pound dropped not long after 2200 GMT on Wednesday, when a dinner on Wednesday between UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen ended with both sides still far apart.

At the current juncture, the balance of risks appears to be shifting to the downside for the pound as the end game approaches for Brexit talks, Lee Hardman, currency analyst at MUFG, wrote in a note to clients. Hopes for a lastminute trade deal are fading.

The pound extended its fall in early London trading, down 0.6 against the dollar at 1.3318 at 0829 GMT. Versus the euro it was down around 0.7 at 90.755 pence.

The British currency has been jittery on Brexit headlines, dropping in response to news suggesting a deal is unlikely and rising when hopes are raised. Many investment banks still think that a Brexit deal will be reached at the last minute.

Positioning on the pound is only slightly bearish speculators have cut their net short position in recent weeks meaning that a short squeeze is not expected in the event of a positive outcome.

ING FX strategists said that, although the pound is likely to trade on the soft side on Thursday as a result of the disappointing outcome of the Johnson and Von der Leyen…

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