Pound moves on reports that Brexit transition deal agreed

Pound moves on reports that Brexit transition deal agreed

He said this highlights the importance of the United Kingdom engaging meaningfully on all aspects of the Withdrawal Agreement, including the fallback Protocol on Ireland and the Tánaiste is looking forward to hearing Mr Barnier's assessment of whether that is happening.

"And what we're presenting to you today is a legal text, a joint legal text which constitutes, in my mind, a decisive text, because we were able this morning to agree, and after all those days and nights of hard work, on a large part of what will make up an global agreement for the ordered withdrawal of the United Kingdom", he said. "There is some progress on Ireland but it's not fully solved - there is agreement on the backstop but not all details".

"That we now have to wait until 2020 to assume full control is an undoubted disappointment", said Davidson, who leads May's party in Scotland. "Ireland will be discussed further, there is partial convergence of views", an unnamed diplomat was quoted as saying by the Reuters news agency earlier.

Before his own meeting with Barnier, Ireland's main Brexit point man, Foreign Minister Simon Coveney, warned that Dublin wanted assurances from the European Union that there would be "no backsliding" from London on an agreement in December that there would be no disruptive "hard border" on the island, if necessary by aligning Northern Ireland with the EU.

Coveney's presence today confirms the Irish border remains a sticking point and our suspicion is that information provided on this issue will be the signal markets will be watching - confirmation that the Irish question is moving in the right direction could well stimulate the Pound.

London had rejected a "backstop" arrangement as set out in the EU's draft of the withdrawal treaty. Under this, Northern Ireland would effectively submit to European Union economic rules and so become potentially isolated from the British mainland. "Risks to GBP point to near-term potential upside, particularly versus the Euro, in our view", says Pepper.

More news: Russian Federation readies to hand Putin new term in presidential vote

Britain has been keen to get the transition part resolved by the time European Union leaders meet in Brussels on March 22-23 in a bid to give certainty to businesses that are anxious by the lack of firm plans for economic ties after Brexit.

The EU and Britain are still divided on the contentious issue of the North but progress is needed if talks are to move ahead on a Brexit transition deal and a future trade agreement. However, London would need to assure its good faith on the border issue in order to get a transition. Leaders are expected to sign off on the agreement at a summit on Thursday and Friday.

Britain seeks to be part of the bloc's single market for two years after officially leaving in exchange for following European Union regulations.

The document said: "The negotiators have reached agreement on some elements of the draft protocol".

Sterling jumps on announcement of a broad agreement on Britain's transition out of the bloc. The pound last week flirted with the $1.40 mark but failed to break through it and head towards the $1.43 levels it hit in January when a dollar sell-off gathered steam.

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