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UK PM Boris Johnson could be set to announce an emergency toughening of the UK’s existing Covid-19 restrictions as soon as Saturday after being handed evidence of the virulence of a mutant strain of the virus that is spreading in London and the South East, reported the Telegraph.

Travel restrictions are amongst the measures under consider, with ideas being floated such as restricting travel between the South East and other parts of the country and banning commuters from travelling into London.

The new strain of the virus is feared to be far more infectious than the original strain.

Market Reaction

GBP/USD has slipped a little from the 1.3500 mark, but volumes remain thin as participants exit for the weekend. A more pronounced reaction to any adverse UK lockdown rules is likely to come as Asian participants arrive for the market open on Sunday (London time) and then as Europeans arrive at their desks on Monday morning. Brexit remains the main focus for GBP, however.