Skip to content

Trading foreign exchange on margin carries a high level of risk, and may not be suitable for all investors. Before deciding to trade foreign exchange you should carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite. You could sustain a loss of some or all of your initial investment and should not invest money that you cannot afford to lose. Trading foreign exchange on margin carries a high level of risk, and may not be suitable for all investors. Before deciding to trade foreign exchange you should carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite. You could sustain a loss of some or all of your initial investment and should not invest money that you cannot afford to lose.

GBP/USD falls ahead of Bank of England rate decision

GBP/USD dips after a 5-day decline amidst recession fears and inflation concerns. As traders eye the BoE's March 21st meeting without expected rate changes, sentiments and historical volatility loom large over the pound's future.

Source: Bloomberg

Data current as of 3/18/2024

Key points

  • GBP/USD falls from YTD highs above 1.2800: (0:32)
  • Bank of England meets March 21st: (2:00)
  • Is the UK economy slowing?: (3:42)
  • Pound could fall on Bank of England meeting: (5:46)
  • GBP/USD client sentiment: 54% long: (6:34)

GBP/USD falls from YTD highs above 1.2800

The British pound has seen a notable decline against the US dollar, shedding over 100 pips, marking its fifth consecutive day of losses. This downward trend has taken GBP/USD well below its year-to-date highs above 1.2800. The pound's weakening signifies market adjustments in anticipation of economic data and central bank decisions, affecting traders who monitor currency pair movements for potential opportunities.

Bank of England meets March 21st

As March 21st approaches, all eyes are on the Bank of England, with the market expecting interest rates to hold steady at 5.25%. This anticipation stems from the current economic landscape and the central bank's previous decisions aimed at balancing growth and inflation. The meeting's outcome could have significant implications for GBP/USD, as traders gauge the bank's confidence in the UK's economic recovery and its readiness to adjust monetary policy if necessary.

Is the UK economy slowing?

Recent data indicating that the UK has entered a technical recession, alongside persistent inflation at 4%, raises concerns about the economy's direction. This slowing growth, juxtaposed with high inflation, presents a challenging scenario for the Bank of England, potentially impacting its future monetary policy decisions.

Pound could fall on Bank of England meeting

Given the fluctuations GBP/USD has experienced, hitting lows near 1.0500 since 2022 and peaks around 1.7000 since 2014, the upcoming Bank of England meeting could be a pivotal moment. Now under 1.2800, GBP/USD has historical precedent to move heavily in either direction. The currency pair's volatility highlights the impact of economic policy and the Bank's ability to either trigger further declines for GBP or pave the way for the pound's recovery.

54% of GBP/USD traders are long

With over half of GBP/USD traders at IG maintaining long positions, as per IG's Client Sentiment data, there’s still optimism in the market for British pound. This sentiment serves as a temperature check for trader confidence in the pound's prospects. Such sentiment indicators can provide valuable insights, complementing fundamental and technical analysis in forex trading strategies.

How to trade GBP/USD

  1. Open an account to get started, or practice on a demo account
  2. Choose your forex trading platform
  3. Open, monitor, and close positions on GBP/USD

Trading forex requires an account with a forex broker like IG. GBP/USD can be found under the 'Major' pairs tab. Many traders also watch major forex pairs like EUR/USD and USD/JPY for potential opportunities based on economic events such as inflation releases or interest rate decisions. Economic events can produce more volatility for forex pairs, which can mean greater potential profits and losses as risks can increase at these times.

You can help develop your forex trading strategies using resources like IG’s YouTube channel. Our curated playlists can help you stay up to date on current markets and understanding key terms. Once your strategy is developed, you can follow the above steps to opening an account and getting started trading forex.

Your profit or loss is calculated according to your full position size. Leverage will magnify both your profits and losses. It’s important to manage your risks carefully as losses can exceed your deposit. Ensure you understand the risks and benefits associated with trading leveraged products before you start trading with them. Trade using money you’re comfortable losing.

This information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG US LLC. This material does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. You should not treat any opinion expressed in this material as a specific inducement to make any investment or follow any strategy, but only as an expression of opinion. This material does not consider your investment objectives, financial situation or needs and is not intended as recommendations appropriate for you. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of the above information. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. See our Summary Conflicts Policy, available on our website.

Live prices on the most popular forex markets

Prices above are subject to our website terms and agreements. Prices are indicative only

You might be interested in…

Find out what charges your trades could incur with our transparent fee structure.

Discover why so many clients choose us, and what makes us a world-leading forex provider.

Stay on top of upcoming market-moving events with our customisable economic calendar.