ECB's Interest Rate Hike Lifts Exporters' Confidence

By Travelex Global Business Payments, PRNE
Tuesday, May 10, 2011

LONDON, May 11, 2011 - British exporters' confidence in the UK economy and trade
opportunities has led to a three point increase in the Travelex Confidence
Index, released today. The Index, which measures the sentiment of UK
businesses trading internationally, has regained the high seen earlier this
year and currently stands at 106 - five points higher than at the same time
last year.

Since March, exporters' confidence in the UK's economy has
increased by 25% to 55%. The European Central Bank's April interest rate rise
and the consequent strengthening of the euro have combined to provide
exporters with a competitive edge in the international marketplace and a
renewed confidence in current and future trading opportunities.

Exporter confidence is also being propped up by the
Government's stated objective to target an export-led economic recovery, with
58% of exporters believing its policies are effective compared to 32% in
March, before the Budget announcement - a rise of 81%.

David Sear, Global Managing Director at Travelex Global
Business Payments, said:

"April revealed a blossoming of confidence amongst UK
exporters in trade conditions and the economy. Interest rates play a strong
role in determining the strength of currencies and we can clearly see this
playing out in April. The European Central Banks' hawkish approach has
energised UK exporters, who are brimming with confidence with the resulting
weakening of the pound.

"Although export trade is emerging as a strong contender to
boost UK economic growth it is vulnerable to any change in the outlook for
the eurozone interest rates. The ECB's less hawkish than expected stance on
policy has already seen sterling recover from its lowest in more than a year
as investors temper their outlook. If that theme gains traction in the coming
weeks, it suggests a softer euro/sterling which might bode better for UK
importer sentiment.

About Travelex Confidence Index

The Travelex Confidence Index (TCI), released monthly by Travelex Global
Business Payments, provides a key indicator on international trade and
economic conditions. Conducted by independent research company TNS-RI, the
Travelex Confidence Index tracks the views and sentiments of the UK's SME
importers and exporters across industry sectors and UK regions. The TCI is
the only piece of research available that regularly tracks the UK's SME
importers and exporters. Visit

    Media enquiries:

    Jessica Buttress
    Travelex Global Business Payments
    T: +44(0)20-8415-4204


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