The British pound is climbing

The British pound is climbing.

The currency is up by 0.4% at 1.2489 against the US dollar as of 8:05 a.m. ET.

Earlier, the latest data from IHS Markit showed that services PMI rose to 55.0 in March, up from the prior reading of 53.3, and above expectations of 53.5.

“March data pointed to a rebound in UK service sector growth, with business activity and incoming new work both rising at the strongest rates so far in 2017,” an IHS Markit release said.

Separately, UK Prime Minister Theresa May met Saudi finance officials as part of a lobbying effort to win a role hosting the world’s biggest share flotation, the Saudi Aramco IPO.

As for the rest of the world, here’s the scoreboard as of 8:12 a.m. ET:

  • The euro is little changed at 1.0678 against the dollar. Earlier, the latest PMI surveys from IHS Markit showed that March’s composite reading was 56.4, the best pace of expansion since the first quarter of 2011.
  • The Russian ruble is up by 0.4% at 55.8660 per dollar, while Brent crude oil, the international benchmark, is higher by 1.3% at $US54.87 per barrel. Markit Services PMI came in at 56.6 in March, after the prior reading of 55.5.
  • The US dollar index is little changed at 100.46 on a busy data day. US private payrolls rose by 263,000 in March, according to ADP Research Institute. Moreover, Markit PMI and ISM nonmanufacturing will be out at 9:45 a.m. ET and 10 a.m. ET, and the March Federal Open Market Committee minutes will be released at 2 p.m. ET.

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