* Graphic: Sterling and gilt yields bit.ly/2dgAXn1
* Graphic: World FX rates in 2017 tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh
* Graphic: Trade-weighted sterling since Brexit vote tmsnrt.rs/2hwV9Hv
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By Ritvik Carvalho
LONDON, April 6 Britain's pound fell against the
dollar on Thursday in a session that saw it flip direction
several times as investors saw uncertainty surrounding the
country's departure from the European Union outweighing signs of
The pound bounced on Wednesday on stronger-than-expected
services activity data, which suggested Britain's dominant
services sector was still thriving.
But it gave up some of those gains on Thursday, as investors
took the view that until either Britain or the EU shows evidence
of softening their negotiating stances, Brexit would be negative
for the British economy.
Sterling was slightly lower on the day at $1.2477
in late trade. It was 0.1 percent higher at 85.31 pence per
"The pound-dollar should actually remain range bound for
quite some time," said Alejandro Zambrano, chief markets analyst
at Amana Capital.
"In the back of their heads investors are still worried
about Brexit even though the PMI services number was really
Sterling has lost nearly a fifth of its value against the
dollar since Britain voted last June to leave the EU.
Since then, investors have broadly stayed bearish on the
currency despite initial signs of resilience from the economy
that confounded expectations of a slowdown, worried about
long-term uncertainty surrounding Brexit.
Speculators took their bets against the pound versus the
dollar to record highs last month, although they have since
trimmed those short positions.
"The moment I'll turn my view around and turn materially
long on sterling is when I know the European Union is willing to
give Britain a good deal on services -- financial services to be
more specific," said Jordan Rochester, currency strategist with
"Confidence on both sides is pretty firm, so the initial
talks are going to be slow and it's not until mid-May when those
European Council President Donald Tusk met British Prime
Minister Theresa May in London on Thursday.
The EU's chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, insisted on
Wednesday that Britain must stop pressing for immediate parallel
talks with the bloc on a post-Brexit free trade deal, and first
agree on withdrawal terms.
Investors are eyeing an EU summit on April 29, where EU
directives for Brexit negotiations will be ratified.
(Reporting by Ritvik Carvalho Editing by Ralph Boulton)