The British pound came rallied significantly vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested offers around the US$ 1.9700 figure and was supported around the $1.9500 figure. Sterling benefited from increased speculation that Bank of England may hold rates steady in February despite a slowing global economy. Data released in the U.K. today saw BBA December mortgage approvals fall to an all-time low while underlying mortgage lending was steady at ₤4.7 billion. Cable bids are cited around the US$ 1.9260 level. The euro fell vis-à-vis the British pound as the single currency tested bids around the ₤0.7460 level and was capped around the ₤0.7490 level.