U.K. Debt Chief Had No Complaints From Investors on PoundAnchalee Worrachate
International investors in U.K. government bonds are undeterred by a weaker pound, according to the head of Britain’s Debt Management Office, Robert Stheeman.
The decline in sterling “has not been flagged as an issue with me to date,” Stheeman said in an e-mailed response to questions. “This does not seem to be a major concern for the market. Overseas investors appear to take reassurance from the wider institutional framework in the U.K.”
The pound has tumbled 4.7 percent this year, the second-worst performance after the yen, based on Bloomberg Correlation-Weighted Indexes, which track 10 developed-nation currencies. The 10-year gilt yield was at 1.88 percent at 4:52 p.m. London time today, compared with 1.83 percent on Dec. 31.
Stheeman was commenting after the Debt Management Office announced it planned to sell 151 billion pounds ($228 billion) of gilts in the fiscal year starting next month, an 8.4 percent drop from this year. The amount was based on Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne’s budget, which he presented to the parliament today.
The debt agency said it would raise the proportion of inflation-linked bond sales to 23.7 percent of supply.
“We have listened to clear market expressions of interest in additional supply” of the index-linked securities, Stheeman said. “They are cost-effective, especially in the longer maturities, relative to their conventional counterparts.”