In global terms it was a mediocre week for the euro. It lost half a Japanese yen and three quarters of a US cent. That was despite a half-cent jump on Tuesday after investors seized upon the almost certainly erroneous idea that the European Central Bank is about to begin winding down its asset purchase scheme. The Euroland economic data were mostly alright but investors' focus was elsewhere.

One factor was the growing expectation of a US interest rate increase in December. Another was the abject retreat of the British pound after the prime minister told her party conference that the Article 50 process to leave the EU would begin by the end of March. For some reason it took markets by surprise and they set about giving the pound another good thrashing. Helped lower by a sharp downward spike on Thursday night sterling lost nearly four euro cents on the week.