The pound eased after touching six month highs overnight as voting in a landmark referendum on whether the U.K. should remain in the European Union got underway.
GBP/USD was last at 1.4760, up 0.36% for the day after touching highs of 1.4845 overnight, the strongest level since December 31.
Sterling reviewed a boost late Wednesday after an opinion poll indicated that support for the Remain campaign edged into the lead.
The YouGov poll for The Times newspaper showed that 51% of voters supported the campaign to remain in the EU, with 49% supporting Brexit, after a previous YouGov poll showing a lead for the campaign to leave.
A second poll, conducted by ComRes for the Daily Mail newspaper and ITV (LON:ITV) television showed the Remain campaign had a 48% to 42% lead over the Leave camp.
Investors fear that a Brexit vote would hit global stocks, bonds and currencies, in particular the pound, which some analysts have predicted could slump by 15%.
Reuters reported Thursday that finance leaders form the G7 nations will issue a statement stressing their readiness to take all necessary steps to calm markets in the event of a Brexit vote.
Rating agency Standard and Poor’s said Thursday that Britain’s triple A credit rating would be downgraded within a short period of time if the U.K. were to exit.
Sterling was trading close to three-week highs against the euro, with EUR/GBP sliding 0.18% to 0.7661.
Against the dollar the single currency pushed higher, with EUR/USD rising 0.24% to 1.1322.
The dollar was steady against the safe haven yen, with USD/JPY at 104.50, not far from the two-year trough of 103.53 set last Thursday.
The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was down 0.21% at 93.62.