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Pound falls as pressure on PM May builds

Sunday Times report claiming agreement from 40 MPs on letter of no confidence in Theresa May hits the pound.

Pound falls as pressure on PM May builds

The pound has fallen amid fears of political uncertainty after reports 40 MPs had agreed to sign a letter of no confidence in prime minister Theresa May.

Sterling dropped 0.8% against the dollar to $1.308, while the euro rose 0.6% against the currency to trade at 89p.

'Sterling is suffering today as traders ponder how long Theresa May has left in Downing Street,' said David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets UK.

'Whether 40 Tory MPs are actually planning to challenge her leadership or not has yet to be seen, but the talk of it is enough to send sterling lower.'

Henry Croft, research analyst at Accendo Markets, said developments throughout the day would be 'closely watched by markets'.

The Sunday Times reported that 40 Conservative MPs, eight short of the number required to force a leadership challenge - had joined a list of rebels wanting May to resign.

May came under further pressure from the leaking of a letter from foreign minister Boris Johnson and environment secretary Michael Gove complaining of 'insufficient energy' on Brexit from some parts of the government.

The pound was also weighed down by fears over the Brexit negotiations after the EU's chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said he was drawing up contingency plans for a possible collapse of talks.

The pound's fall helped lift the FTSE 100, whose members rely on overseas markets for around three-quarters of their revenues. 

The UK blue-chip index rose 13 points to 7,446, outperforming European markets.

6 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Jeff Warren

Nov 13, 2017 at 17:14

What are they talking about ? the F T S E closed DOWN 17.81

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Nov 13, 2017 at 17:43

The article was posted at 10:48 and looks like it hasn't been updated since. And from what I can see, infrastructure has taken another big hit today presumably because of fears that May's government will collapse and let Labour in.

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Nov 13, 2017 at 22:29

It's an utter shambles, isn't it? Buffoons to the right, buffoons to the left......that dreadful Old Boys' Club on the banks of the Thames full of "honourable members" shouting ra, ra ..... the UK a laughing-stock.

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Nov 14, 2017 at 03:23

May is weak and the election fiasco shows a real lack of political ability. President Trump does an exceptional job of telling it like it is and May just isn't up to the job.

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Roger Bacon

Nov 14, 2017 at 18:12

We probably have an inadequate prime minister. But .... she has good values and is hanging on because "apres moi, la guerre". Who would be there in her place ?. That ridiculous poser Johnson ?, I think not .. (please). Gove .. he of the night .. again not. David "I'll show you how relaxed I am by wearing my specs at half mast .. Davis ... oh dear no. There is nobody except Amber Rudd who comes near it .. and she is hanging on to a marginal seat which will be swamped at the next election. She (May) has to buy time. If the conservatives are to survive she has to bring on the next generation. That will take her time. Too long I fear. Prepare yourselves for Corbyn and lets hope the world won't mark us down as a bad risk with a consequent balloning of debt , interest rates, very much higher taxes , but perhaps ................ a fairer society. Its got to happen folks.

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Donald Chan

Nov 18, 2017 at 11:44

May appears weak because she is not getting the support she deserves as PM dealing with what is essentially now a foreign power.

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FTSE back above 7,000 as Superdry and Convatec dive

by Daniel Grote on Oct 15, 2018 at 15:15

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