European Union post-Brexit deal deadline slips away but Brussels still talking

"The EU have effectively ended them and only if the EU fundamentally shifts its position will it be worth talking", Prime Minister Boris Johnson's official spokesman told reporters.

"The most important thing is that if we accept and recognise that the United Kingdom wants to strike out on its own path and don't want to conform to certain rules of the single market - or it wants to introduce new aid regimes that don't exist in the European Union - then we need to have mechanisms for the new distance between the European Union and the legal framework of the United Kingdom, on how we react and what mechanisms we have to ensure that we have fair trade relations".

Lord Frost tweeted: "Disappointed by the European Council conclusions on UK/EU negotiations".

In an unexpected development European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was given leave from the talks to self-isolate after a member of her front office tested positive for COVID-19.

"[I am] surprised by the suggestion that to get an agreement all future moves must come from UK. It's an unusual approach to conducting a negotiation", Frost added.

Johnson had set the European Union summit as a deadline for a deal, but is under pressure after fresh warnings that British companies are nowhere near ready for the consequences of a cliff-edge divorce when a post-Brexit transition periods ends on December 31.

At the end of it all, this week appears to have culminated in more Brexit posturing by both sides as negotiations are set to continue over the coming weeks still.

"And so now is the time for our businesses to get ready and for our hauliers to get ready, for our travellers to get ready, and of course we are willing to discuss the practicalities with our friends where a lot of progress has already been made, on such issues as social security and aviation, nuclear cooperation, and so on".

Johnson also accused Brussels of failing to negotiate seriously.

"If conditions aren't met, it's possible we won't have an agreement", French President Emmanuel Macron said as he arrived at the summit in Brussels.

The sides are also far apart on the so-called level playing field guarantees of fair competition.

"We can not say we are close to an agreement".

"We will do everything we can but not at any price. My team and I will continue intensive discussions over the coming weeks", he said.

All sides have acknowledged that the question of future fishing rights once the current Brexit transition period ends remains among the most hard issues to be resolved.

Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesperson Christine Jardine also said his comments "are just further evidence of the PM's incompetence".

"We shall remain available until the last possible day - the negotiations aren't over". Simon Coveney said during an Irish parliamentary committee meeting.

Looking ahead, the pound will remain a key focus for now but expect stocks and risk to take cues from any more USA stimulus headlines ahead of the weekend.

"There is some apprehension over a possible decision later today by prime minister Boris Johnson that could see him call time on any further discussions on account of perceived foot dragging on the part of European Union officials", said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets.

But Mr Coveney warned that by November time would be "really running out".