Two steps forward for Iranian nuclear deal


In November, an historic deal between Iran and the US, Russia, China and European powers was struck. Today, two significant things regarding the deal are happening.

Part of the agreement was that Iran begin curbing its uranium enrichment. That curbing has started today, according to state TV.

And today is also the day the UN nuclear watchdog, the IAEA, is expected to give the go-ahead to the full implementation of the deal.

It's hopes that a fresh round of talks with Iran could hail a definitive settlement to the decade-old nuclear standoff, and that November's agreement laid the groundwork for a more comprehensive agreement to be made this year.

Foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton told reporters this morning: "Depending on how things work out today, I hope that we will start talks within the next few weeks".

The deal dispelled chances of imminent conflict, but to what extent it diminished the risk premium associated with the Middle East is still yet to be fully realised.

Safe haven trades usually capitalise on political turmoil, so the perception of easing tensions is, for the time being at least, significant in terms of tail risks being removed.