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Sterling breaks above $1.31 mark

The pound has extended its earlier rally to break through $1.31 against the US dollar for the first time in nearly 10 months, fuelled by a softer greenback and glimmers of optimism over Brexit talks.

Sterling has been climbing steadily higher all day after the British government on Thursday conceded that it has financial obligations to the EU after its exit. It has also been propelled higher against the dollar as the buck sinks lower under weak readings on inflation on retail sales helped cast doubt on the chances of another interest-rate hike this year.

That brings the pound’s gains for the day to nearly 1.3 per cent.