Spanish, Dutch have no new agreement on Brexit, Dutch official says

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Citing a person familiar with the matter, Bloomberg said that Spanish economy minister Luis de Guindos and his Dutch counterpart Wopke Hoekstra had met earlier in the week to discuss Brexit. Some in the United Kingdom government favour keeping close ties with the European Union, the country's biggest trade partner, in what is known as a "soft Brexit", while others want a clean break.

However, while the two finance heads reiterated the importance of British ties for both countries, and agreed to look out for each other's shared interests they also offered their full support to Michel Barnier with negotiations, a Spanish economy ministry official said.

Sterling rose more than half a percent to hit a four-month high against the dollar on Friday as investors dumped the greenback against a range of peers following strong euro gains but the pound lost ground against the single currency.

A spokeswoman for the Spanish Economy Ministry stressed that both ministers support chief European Union negotiator Michel Barnier's efforts, and said they're not working together toward a soft Brexit deal.

While investors have warmed up to the bullish sterling theme against the dollar in recent weeks on expectations renewed of weakness in the USA currency, sterling bets against the euro have been far more cautious. "We also have positive language around financial services and the prospect of Britain paying for market access".

The currency plunged after Britons voted by a small margin to leave the EU.