The dollar took a hit last Friday when preliminary gross domestic product data showed the American economy growing by 0.3% in the second quarter, less than half the expected expansion. Investors saw the slower growth as a deterrent to the Federal Reserve's ambitions for higher interest rates and they marked down the dollar. On the week it is half cent lower against the euro.

And the dollar is half a cent higher against sterling. The pound's bad moment came on Thursday when the Bank of England announced its monetary policy decision. Bank Rate was halved to 0.25% and the bank will restart its quantitative easing programme with the purchase of £70bn more government and corporate bonds. That, together with the near-promise that Bank Rate will be even closer to zero by Christmas, cost the pound a cent and a half in less than ten minutes.