This week eyes will be on Manchester for Tony Blair's last Labour party conference as prime minister.

Sterling started the week with the pound worth $1.90475, €1.48810 and 221.250 yen.

Today sees chancellor Gordon Brown making his speech to the conference and, while the prime minister is hoping for speculation about his successor to take a back seat during the conference, many will see it as Mr Brown's chance to set out his case to take power.

Mr Blair will be addressing the conference on Tuesday.

Today also sees the Bank of England issuing its Quarterly Bulletin. The bulletin will examine the latest movements in the sterling and global financial markets as well as the UK's export performance.

The housing market in both the US and the UK will also come into focus this week.

In the UK on Wednesday Barratt Developments will issue its full year results, while today Wolseley's results should show how the US property market is faring, although the company itself is not expected to be greatly hit by the slowing housing market across the Atlantic.

Barratt is expected to post a small rise in profits.