The British pound depreciated vis-à-vis the U.S. dollar today as cable tested bids around the US$ 1.6055 level and was supported around the $1.6240 level.  Data released in the U.K. today saw the December CIPS manufacturing index improve to 54.1 from 51.8 in November, the highest reading since November 2007.  This improvement could signal that the manufacturing sector contributed positively to U.K. GDP at the end of Q4 and could lead to an overall positive print in U.K. GDP for the quarter.  Other data released in the U.K. overnight saw November mortgage approvals increase to 60,520 from 57,720 while the M4 money supply was up 0.1% m/m and 9.3% y/y.  U.S. bond giant PIMCO announced it is reducing its holdings of U.K. bonds.  Bank of England today announced part of its asset purchase program plans for Q1 in which it will purchase at least ?215 million in gilts.  Cable bids are cited around the US$ 1.5755 level.  The euro moved lower vis-à-vis the British pound as cable tested bids around the ?0.8965 level and was supported around the ?0.8855 level.