British pound jumps after government loses vote on Brexit timetable
The British pound gained in Wednesday trading after the U.K. government was defeated on a vote concerning the Brexit timetable. The vote in favor of the so-called Grieve amendment prescribes that Prime Minister Theresa May's government has three days to come up with a plan B after losing a meaningful vote. Otherwise, Parliament would regain control of handling Brexit. The Grieve amendment was first floated in December, leading market participants to believe that a hard Brexit was even less likely under the control of Parliament. May scheduled a vote on her Brexit deal for Jan. 15, postponing it from December in what was seen as a bid to stave off defeat. U.K. lawmakers will debate the European Union withdrawal agreement until next week's vote. The British pound strengthened 0.4% versus the U.S. dollar, last buying $1.2782. The euro-sterling pair was modestly higher with one euro buying £0.9021, up 0.2%. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.