Chart of the week: the pound’s post-war swan dive

Currencies chart

The pound hit a new 20-month low against the dollar this week as Prime Minister Theresa May postponed the Brexit vote. After the 2016 referendum, sterling slumped to its lowest level in history against a basket of currencies. “While some may attempt to blame this all on Brexit, it’s really the continuation of a story going back decades,” says Ed Conway in The Times. Since the 1960s sterling has lost more of its value than any major currency in the world.

Key episodes that triggered falls include major devaluations in 1949 and 1967; the 1976 crisis, when we had to call in the International Monetary Fund; the decline after we were forced out of the Exchange-Rate Mechanism in 1992, and the 2008 financial crisis.