The British pound traded steady against major currencies following the release of Nationwide Consumer Confidence Index and NIESR GDP estimate data in the month of March during early Asian trading on Wednesday. As of now, the pound is trading near 1.4736 against the US dollar, 1.6833 versus the Swiss franc, 148.28 against the yen and 0.9010 versus the euro.

An index measuring consumer confidence in the United Kingdom tied a record low score in March, Nationwide said on Wednesday, posting a reading of 41.

That was lower than analyst expectations for a score of 45 after the index came in at 43 in February.

The economy of Great Britain contracted by an estimated 1.5 percent in the first three months of 2009, according to a study released today by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR).

The Institute's estimate was slightly lower than the 1.6 percent contraction officially recorded for the final quarter of 2008.

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