The past month has been promising for the UK, with the first wave of vaccines being administered and hope for a successful post Brexit trade deal with the EU. Although the main agenda for this year has been tackling the health, social and economic implications of the pandemic, the importance of securing a Brexit trade deal is now making the headlines. At the time of writing, and after ongoing talks with EU leaders, it was reported that Boris Johnson is on the “path to an agreement”. Following the remarks, the pound sterling climbed 0.4% over the US dollar, breaking above the $1.35 barrier.
European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen stated “I am glad to report that the issues linked to governance now have largely been resolved. The next few days are going to be decisive.” Once the UK secure a deal, and it is ratified on both sides, Britain’s prospects will feel decidedly different.
Moreover, following the optimistic news of the vaccine, a spokesperson for The Bank of England (BoE) stated “The positive news on vaccine trials, and plans for widespread rollout, were likely to support future UK and global activity.” They went on to say “This would be expected to reduce uncertainty about the path of the economy, supporting future spending by households and companies.”
While Brexit and the pandemic will dominate the British economy for years to come, and the overall impact is hard to judge, the end of negotiations will improve clarity at the very least. Combined with the reopening of economies across the world and the massive support from central banks and governments, the outlook for the UK is improving.
Clarity will be a catalyst for investors to start reconsidering the case for UK assets. Combined with global economic developments, there is a potential for a brighter outlook for the UK at the start of 2021.
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