The recent interest rate hike by the Bank of England, the first since 2007, has been well documented by news outlets across the UK, and is perhaps one of the most significant economic events in the UK this year. With the forex market being so sensitive to such events, it could well have an impact on the pound’s value when traded against other currencies. Here are some of the effects the hike may have on forex trading.
Lower Consumer Confidence
Since the cost of borrowing will go up, and levels of disposable income will go down, consumers are likely to be more cautious with their spending, meaning businesses may have to tighten up on spending. This could well serve to reduce confidence in the pound, which is forecasted to trade as low as 1.10 euros towards the end of the year.
A drop in consumer confidence could well mean that forex traders buy the pound when it is cheap, in the hope that confidence (and the economy itself) picks up in the near future.
Since inflation has been on the rise, one of the main reasons for the interest rate hike was to protect households from the effects of rising inflation. It could also attract foreign investment, since investors will get higher returns on their investments.
A higher amount of foreign investment is sure to cause the value of the pound to rise, which could mean that forex investors will be less likely to purchase the currency, and may instead wait for it to dip in value.
Since it has been so long since the last interest rate hike in the UK, it is hard to predict exactly what the future decisions of the BoE may be. This will no doubt increase the pound’s volatility, as investors may be unsure as to how they should plan for investing in the currency when it could rise or fall at any given moment.
Forex trading activity usually becomes frenzied whenever a major economic event like this takes place, so trading a currency like the pound may well be difficult for those traders looking for a more stable currency.
When all is said and done, the current interest rate is still minimal (at least compared to pre-financial crisis times) so it is unlikely to have a truly significant impact on the UK economy. Since economic growth has been so slow in the UK, it may well be a while before interest rates undergo another hike.
Much of this will depend on how the UK economy performs in the coming months, so it may well be a waiting game for traders of the pound, who will have to wait for the next BoE interest rate meeting to get a clearer understanding of where the currency may be headed.
Ultimately, the interest rate hike is unlikely to have a truly significant consequence for forex trading, although it will no doubt have influenced many traders’ investments. That being said, investors are sure to be monitoring some of the more long-term effects this move could have on the UK economy as a whole.