The unemployment rate in the United Kingdom fell more than forecast in February to 8.3 percent from a previous 8.4 percent. It was expected to remain unchanged. This brings the rate marginally below the sixteen-year high.
At the same time, a much anticipated Bank of England minutes of the April meeting was released. The minutes had a more positive tone than expected and signalled that the BOE was unlikely to expand quantitative easing.
This was based on the reason that inflation in the UK is currently high, and would not sustain more stimulus measures.
The votes published from the April meeting show that Monetary Policy Committee members refrained from voting for more quantitative easing. MPC member Adam Posen, a long-standing advocate of QE, also dropped his call for more stimulus.
The euro fell to a nineteen-month low against the pound, with EURGBP tumbling to 0.8183 from 0.8236. This is the lowest since 29 August 2011.
GBPUSD rose to a two-week high of 1.5992 from 1.5916.