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British pound to Hong Kong dollar exchange rates

A lookback at the Hong Kong dollar and its relationship with the British pound.

The latest on GBP to HKD exchange rates

One British pound is currently worth HKD.

To see the latest exchange rate and compare historic rates year on year, head over to our exchange rates page.

The latest on GBP to HKD exchange rates

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The lowdown on the Hong Kong dollar

When Hong Kong was established as a free trading port back in 1841, there was no local currency and instead, foreign currencies such as Indian rupees, Spanish dollars and Chinese coins were circulated around. At the time, it was the policy of the British government to implement pound sterling into all of its colonies (of which Hong Kong was one), but the population of Hong Kong preferred the more familiar Spanish coins. By 1866, the British government admitted defeat and began minting Hong Kong silver dollar coins to look like the Spanish ones.

These days, the currency is used in both Hong Kong and Macau and, since the regions are so close to each other, they keep to similar exchange rates to one another.

A common slang term for the Hong Kong dollar – especially among English-speaking expats that live in Hong Kong – is the honkie.

A look back at British pound to Hong Kong dollar rates

After Hong Kong’s liberation from the Japanese occupation at the end of the Second World War, the Hong Kong dollar was pegged to the British pound at a rate of 16 Hong Kong dollars to the pound – a peg that stayed in place right up until 1967.

In 1967, the sterling was devalued and in turn, the dollar’s pegged to the pound was increased to 14.54 dollars to the pound, remaining in place until 1972.

Pegging to the US dollar

In 1972, the Hong Kong dollar was instead pegged to the US dollar, with a rate given of 5.65 Hong Kong dollars to the US dollar, putting it at around 14.41 HK dollars to the pound. Just over a year later in 1973, this was revised to 5.085 Hong Kong dollars to the US dollar, putting the Hong Kong dollar at around 13 to the pound.

Between 1974 and 1983, the Hong Kong dollar was floated, and thanks to a strong economy, it reached as much as 7.68 against the pound by end of 1976.

On 17 October 1983, the Hong Kong dollar was again pegged to the US dollar at a rate of 7.8 to one US dollar, putting it at 12.1 to the pound.

The modern Hong Kong dollar

Since the 1980s, Hong Kong’s economy has remained strong.  The Hong Kong dollar remains pegged to the US dollar and its value has fluctuated between around 15.5 to the pound in 1993 to 11 to the pound by 2003.

Over the last ten years, the Hong Kong dollar has seen lows of 16.39 in November of 2007, climbing to 10.5 against the pound by January of 2009. Since then, it has remained relatively steady at just under 13.5 Hong Kong dollars to the pound.

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Exchange rates last updated Wednesday, 07 December 2016 08:42:51 GMT.

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