Business News &

Market Updates

Business News and Stock Market Updates

 Keeping you up to date on the coronavirus and businesses and global stock markets are reacting to the ongoing pandemic.

Business and Market News Updates:

PWS Southport business news and market updates keeping you up to date on coronavirus news and how global stock markets are reacting to the ongoing pandemic.

Website Links

Where we have provided links to third party websites for further information, you should be aware that we are not responsible for the accuracy, availability or functionality of these sites, and thus cannot be held liable, directly or indirectly, for any loss however caused by your use of these linked sites.

Friday 11th September 2020

Sky News Live

Thursday 10th September 2020

British mid-caps bounce ahead of emergency Brexit talks, Morrisons slips

(Reuters) – London’s mid-cap FTSE 250 rose for the first time in three days on Thursday ahead of emergency Brexit talks over Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plan to undercut parts of the divorce treaty, while Morrisons tumbled after reporting a drop in half-year profit.

After Britain explicitly stated that it would act outside international law by breaching the divorce treaty, European Union negotiators are trying to gauge how to deal with London after four years of tumultuous negotiations.

The FTSE 100 index was down 0.2%.

After Wednesday’s stock market bounce European futures are flat on Thursday morning

Markets picked up some gains after the U.S. tech rout on Wednesday. Asia-Pacific markets are up, but European futures are flat on Thursday.

After a gain of +1.39% on Wednesday, the FTSE 100 is likely to open flat with futures indicating a small drop when the index begins at 8.00 am.

Hong Kong, mainland markets record ‘lukewarm’ gains amid caution over rebound in stocks

South China Morning Post – The stock markets in Hong Kong and mainland China rose on Thursday following gains in US stocks overnight. Sentiment has been buoyed by recent and upcoming initial public offerings (IPOs) as well.

Asian stock markets gain following tech bounce, euro waits for ECB

SINGAPORE/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Asia’s stock markets snapped their longest losing streak since February on Thursday and rose following a bounce on Wall Street, though subdued trade in currency, commodity and bond markets suggested investors remain cautious about the outlook.

Japan’s Nikkei .N225 rose 0.5% and markets in Shanghai .SSEC and Hong Kong .HSI opened higher. But pressure returned to the oil price on worries about soft demand, a harbinger of weaker global growth.

Indonesian stocks dive 5% as capital city Jakarta plans to reinstate partial coronavirus lockdown

CNBC – Indonesian stocks fell by around 5% on Thursday following an announcement that capital city Jakarta will reinstate partial lockdown measures to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

The decline in the benchmark Jakarta Composite Index stood in contrast with gains seen in most markets across Asia Pacific. The index has also been one of the worst performing in the region so far this year, declining by more than 18% as of Wednesday close compared with a 3.2% gain in the MSCI All Country Asia ex-Japan Index.

Brexit changes in Internal Market Bill will override international law, government reveals

Sky News – Ministers are planning to override parts of the Brexit deal with a bill that could be “inconsistent” with it.

The controversial Internal Market Bill was published after the government admitted yesterday it wanted to potentially “break international law”.


Wednesday 9th September 2020

Stock futures bounce after the Nasdaq posts 10% correction in 3 days, Tesla and Apple rebound

CNBC – U.S. stock futures rebounded on Wednesday as investors snapped up technology shares that were pummeled in the previous three sessions.

Futures for the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100, the epicenter of the selling the last three days, gained 1.9%. S&P 500 futures rose 0.9%. Dow futures indicated an opening gain of about 200 points. The Nasdaq Composite was down more than 10% in three days from a record high, officially entering correction territory. The S&P 500′s three-day loss was its worst since June.

FTSE 100 index futures get it wrong on Wednesday morning

Half an hour before London markets opened, futures had the FTSE 100 index dropping -1.00%. However, the index is pushing up to the 6,000 points mark forty minutes into the session at +1.00%.

Coronavirus: Oxford vaccine trial facing ‘challenge’ as volunteer suffers suspected serious adverse reaction

Sky News – he Oxford coronavirus vaccine trial is facing a “challenge”, the health secretary has admitted, after it was put on hold due to a suspected serious adverse reaction in one of its volunteers.

Researchers have paused the trial while they investigate the reaction in one of the participants in the UK, it was announced on Tuesday night.

Expect the FTSE 100 index to fall at least another -1.00% at the opening on Wednesday

FTSE 100 futures are anticipating the index to open down -1.00% half an hour before the 8 o’clock start.

The index is reacting to the U.S. tech stock rout, falling oil prices, Brexit and the Coronavirus issues.

Boris Johnson presses ahead with new laws to ‘annul’ parts of Brexit deal

Sky News – Boris Johnson is pressing ahead with plans to publish new laws which would “annul” parts of the Brexit withdrawal agreement, despite a Tory backlash led by predecessor Theresa May.

The government will outline controversial Brexit legislation to give themselves the powers to limit checks and EU influence in Northern Ireland in the event that no trade deal can be struck between the UK and EU by the end of the year.

Hong Kong, China stocks fall as Wall Street tech rout spills over, trial of highly-anticipated vaccine is put on hold

South China Morning Post – Stock markets in Hong Kong and mainland China fell on Wednesday morning following an overnight rout in technology shares on Wall Street.

U.S. tech selloff hits equities, oil falls on demand worry

TOKYO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Asian shares fell on Wednesday and oil prices hit lows not seen since June after a rout in technology shares sank Wall Street for a third consecutive day and a major drugmaker delayed testing of a coronavirus vaccine.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS slid 1.06%. Australian stocks .AXJO dropped 2.47%, while shares in China .CSI300 fell 1.53%.

Japan’s Nikkei .N225 skidded 1.12%.

Tuesday 8th September 2020

After an initially positive start European shares fall and U.S. futures negative

European markets open up on Tuesday morning but are heading for another fall as we enter the afternoon session with Brexit weighing heavily on stocks.

U.S. futures are also indicating more pain for the Dow Jones and S&P 500 with tech stocks likely to push shares lower.

Nasdaq futures drop 3% following tech’s worst rout since March, Tesla falls 15%

CNBC – Futures on the tech heavy Nasdaq 100 were set to fall sharply early Tuesday after technology shares suffered their worst sell-off in more than five months last week.

Nasdaq 100 futures fell 3.1%. Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 200 points, or 0.7%.  S&P 500 futures were off by 1.3%. U.S. markets were closed Monday in observance of Labor Day. 

Don’t bet against the U.S. market, it’s likely going higher, BlackRock’s Rieder says

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The U.S. stock market’s two-day tech-led fall last week has revived investor worries about a spiral of selling that could crash the broader market, but Rick Rieder, head of the BlackRock Global Allocation team, does not see stocks going off a cliff.

European futures looking positive on Tuesday morning

Current futures have European markets opening up on Tuesday morning after initially looking likely to fall after Asia-Pacific markets took a downturn in the morning sessions.

However, both the Hang Seng in Hong Kong and the SSE Composite in China picked up in the afternoon session.

FTSE 100 futures are indicating the index will open up between 20-30 points half an hour before the market opens at 8.00 am.

Hong Kong and China stocks weighed down by Trump threat to scale back economic ties, fall at lunch break

South China Morning Post – Trump  repeated on Monday a threat by his administration to decouple the US and Chinese economies, two of the world’s largest, and raised the possibility of halting business with Beijing altogether.

Global shares stabilise, try to shrug off U.S. tech rout scare

TOKYO/HONG KONG (Reuters) – Asian shares and U.S. stock futures regained some footing on Tuesday following a small bounce in European markets as investors looked to whether high-flying U.S. tech shares could recover from their recent rout.

China’s blue-chip index .CSI300 tacked on 0.2% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng .HSI gained 0.6%, even as President Donald Trump on Monday ramped up his anti-Chinese rhetoric by
again raising the idea of de-coupling the U.S. and Chinese economies.

Elsewhere, Australian shares .AXJO rose for a second straight session, up 0.8% as optimism around the development of potential COVID-19 vaccines underpinned investor sentiment,
with miners and financials leading the charge.

Asia-Pacific stocks rise; Japan’s second-quarter GDP revised lower

CNBC – SINGAPORE — Stocks in Asia Pacific were higher in Tuesday afternoon trade, as Japan released revised gross domestic product figures for the second quarter.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 advanced 0.8% in afternoon trade while the Topix index gained 0.69%.

Coronavirus: EasyJet cuts capacity on weaker passenger confidence

Sky News – EasyJet has warned it expects to operate a weaker flight programme than hoped for in the coming months because of a series of coronavirus pressures.

Monday 7th September 2020

Economists stick to Brexit forecasts despite no-deal rhetoric

LONDON (Reuters) – Economists stuck to their forecasts on Monday that Britain and the European Union would agree some sort of post-Brexit trade deal, taking the view that London is likely toughening its rhetoric in a bid to pressure Brussels into a compromise.

FTSE 100 ends the day up 2.39% on Monday

The FTSE 100 in London finished the day up +2.39% ending on 5,937 points, making up most of the previous week’s losses.

Brexit: Boris Johnson planning to override key parts of EU withdrawal agreement – report

Sky News – Boris Johnson is reportedly drawing up new legislation that will override the Brexit withdrawal agreement on Northern Ireland – a move that risks the collapse of trade negotiations with the European Union.

The Financial Times reports that sections of the Internal Market Bill, due to be published on Wednesday, are expected to “eliminate the legal force of parts of the withdrawal agreement” in areas including Northern Ireland customs and state aid.

How will the FTSE 100 start the week?

The FTSE 100 in London fell over -2.50% last week with the index at 5,799 points the lowest level since the end of April 2020.

Current futures have the index potentially starting the week up 30 points, but the current market sentiment likely to remain it’s hard to anticipate how the index will react.

Hong Kong, mainland marginally lower amid improved China trade data, tech declines led by SMIC

South China Morning Post – The Hang Seng Index, which fell 2.9 per cent last week , was 0.05 per cent lower on Monday afternoon, while the Shanghai Composite was trading 0.4 per cent down at 3,343.78, having declined by as much as 0.6 per cent earlier. The Nasdaq-like ChiNext was 1.3 per cent lower at 2,695.92.

China says August exports beat expectations, jumping 9.5% from a year ago

CNBC – China’s dollar-denominated exports beat expectations to rise 9.5% for the month of August from a year ago, data from the country’s General Administration of Customs showed on Monday.

Meanwhile, China’s dollar-denominated imports in August fell 2.1% from a year ago.

Asian shares on fragile footing amid elevated valuations, oil skids

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Asian shares were on the defensive on Monday as investors grappled with sky-high valuations against the backdrop of a global economy in the grip of a deep coronavirus-induced recession while oil prices dropped sharply.

Chinese stocks started lower while shares of Hong Kong-listed Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC) plunged to the lowest since June 16 on fears the firm could be
added to a U.S. trade blacklist. China’s blue-chip index slipped 0.3%.

Japan’s Nikkei fell 0.2% with SoftBank coming under heavy selling following media reports it has spent at least $4 billion buying call options on listed U.S. technology stocks.

Friday 4th September 2020

Global markets begin to rebound from mammoth tech sell-off — what now?

CNBC – European stocks looked to be leading a shift in sentiment on Friday after a massive tech sell-off on Wall Street in the previous session, which briefly spooked global markets.

U.S. behemoths Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Alphabet and Microsoft led the broader tech sector’s sharpest daily decline since March during regular trading hours on Thursday, having fueled much of the U.S. equity market recovery to date.

Another day of volatility expected on global stock markets

After Thursday’s tech stock rout global stock markets continue to be under pressure with Asia-Pacific markets all trading down on Friday.

Current FTSE 100 futures have the index opening down another 40 points at 8.00 am potentially sending the index under 5,800 points and a level not seen since May 2020.

Eat Out To Help Out: More than 100 million meals claimed for in scheme, says chancellor

Sky News – More than 100 million discounted meals have been claimed for under the government’s Eat Out To Help Out scheme, the chancellor has said.

Rishi Sunak said the scheme had helped to protect 1.8 million hospitality jobs since it began on the first Monday in August.

Indexes retreat in Hong Kong, China as rout of ‘overvalued’ technology stocks on Wall Street spills over to Asian markets

South China Morning Post – Stock indexes in Hong Kong and China plunged, as the overnight tumble among technology stocks on Wall Street spilled over to Asian trading, raising concern that the recent run-up in the global equity markets may have been overdone.

Thursday 3rd September 2020

FTSE 100 plunges after nearing 6,000 points market

The FTSE 100 index was on course to have another positive day and was trading near the 6,000 points mark early in the afternoon session.

However, a tech sell-off in the U.S. has seen the index down to 5,850 points before the close at 4.30 pm.

Stock market sell-off accelerates, with Dow plunging 800 points as Apple drags tech lower

CNBC – Stocks fell sharply on Thursday as investors paused in the wake of a recent rally to all-time highs. Tech, the market leader since the rebound began in late March, was the biggest laggard. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 800 points, or more than 2%. The S&P 500 slid 3.3% and the Nasdaq Composite fell by 4.8%.

Coronavirus: Costa to axe 1,650 jobs as it struggles to recover after lockdown

Sky News – Costa Coffee has announced a shake-up putting up to 1,650 jobs at risk as it struggles to recover after the lockdown.

The company said it planned to axe the role of assistant store manager across its UK business.

“The ongoing impact of COVID-19 remains challenging for Costa Coffee and has required the business to make difficult decisions to ensure that as many jobs as possible are protected long-term,” Costa said in a statement.

British stocks rise on fresh stimulus hopes, Chinese data

(Reuters) – London shares rose on Thursday as investors bet on new stimulus measures to drive a faster post-pandemic economic rebound, while a sustained recovery in China’s services sector also lifted sentiment.

The FTSE 100 .FTSE rose 0.9%, climbing for the second straight session, with life insurers .FTNMX8570 and travel stocks .FTNMX5750 leading gains, while the mid-cap index .FTMC advanced 0.4%

After Wednesday’s gains, what’s in store for the FTSE 100 on Thursday

Futures: After losses on Tuesday and a +1.35% gain on Wednesday current futures are indicating the FTSE 100 index will open flat on Thursday morning.

U.S. markets continued on the upward trend on Wednesday and initially pushed Asia-Pacific markets up on Thursday morning. However, both the Hang Seng in Hong Kong and the SSE Composite index in China are trading down in the afternoon session.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan is up +0.90%, but it may be another day of losses in Europe due to continued U.S./China relations.

Stock indexes dip in Hong Kong, China as rising US-China tension weighs on travel rebound and tentative economic growth

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong and China stocks slipped before the lunch break, as investors weighed rising US-China tensions against a rebound in the mainland’s demand for domestic travel and robust economic data.

Asian shares firm on U.S. stimulus hopes, upbeat China data

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Asian equities started strong on Thursday as a sustained recovery in China’s services sector and the prospect of additional U.S. stimulus whetted risk appetite, while the dollar pared gains.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside of Japan climbed 0.5%, clocking its third straight session of gains to hover near a recent 2-1/2-year high.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.9% and Japan’s Nikkei added 1.3%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was up 0.2% while China’s blue-chip index was 0.35% higher.

Coronavirus: 1,200 jobs at risk as Heathrow talks with unions stall

Sky News – Britain’s biggest airport could axe a quarter of its frontline staff after months of talks with trade unions about employee pay and conditions failed to land an agreement.

Sky News has learnt that Heathrow Airport informed union officials on Wednesday afternoon that it was issuing a formal Section 188 notice, triggering a 45-day consultation period that could lead to compulsory job losses.

Wednesday 2nd September 2020

Tech stocks push S&P 500, Nasdaq to record highs at open

(Reuters) – Technology stocks pushed the S&P 500 and Nasdaq to record highs at the open on Wednesday, while the Dow inched closer to its pre-pandemic peak as data showed a moderate rise in U.S. private payrolls last month.

The S&P 500 opened higher by 17.11 points, or 0.49%, at 3,543.76 and the Nasdaq Composite gained 107.60 points, or 0.90%, to 12,047.26 at the opening bell.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 91.13 points, or 0.32%, at the open to 28,736.79.

House prices bounce back to new all-time high, says Nationwide

Sky News – House prices have reached a new record high after bouncing back from falls earlier this year with the biggest rise since 2004 last month, according to figures from Nationwide.

Prices rose by 2% in August compared to the previous month or 3.7% compared to a year ago, adding to evidence of a rapid recovery after coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased.

British stocks gain on signs of economic recovery, Rolls Royce jumps

(Reuters) – London-listed shares rose on Wednesday as investors bet on a faster economic recovery following upbeat manufacturing data from the world’s two biggest economies, while Rolls-Royce jumped after signalling a rebound in demand for luxury cars.

FTSE 100 index likely to gain on Wednesday after fall on Tuesday

Futures: Current market futures are indicating the FTSE 100 index in London will open up approximately 40 points at 8.00 am.

After losing over 100 points on Tuesday and sitting at a level last seen in early May 2020, the index continues to lag other major stock markets.

Government denies raid on foreign aid budget to help plug coronavirus black hole

Sky News – The UK has reiterated a pledge to spend 0.7 per cent of national income on overseas aid even as suspicion mounts that the government seeks to divert money away from the world’s poorest.

A new government department repeated the spending commitment as it opened on Wednesday with the merger of the long-standing Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the relatively-newer Department for International Development (DFID).

Spooked by coronavirus vaccine delays, Hong Kong and China markets ignore US economic recovery data, decline

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong and China stocks fell before lunch on Wednesday, as investors weighed a delay in the development of a vaccine against signs of economic recovery in the United States and mainland China.

Australia records worst economic slump as pandemic ends golden run

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia fell into its deepest economic slump on record last quarter as coronavirus curbs paralysed business activity, while fresh outbreaks threaten to upend any immediate recovery, piling pressure on the government to keep fiscal taps open.

Tuesday 1st September 2020

A miserable day for the FTSE 100 index

The FTSE 100 in London dropped -1.80% on Tuesday after the Bank Holiday break. With most other major markets enjoying a positive the index was pushed down by Rolls Royce Holdings falling -12.00% and BA owner INTERNATIONAL CONSOLIDATED AIRLINES GROUP falling -7.12%

Apple overtakes value of entire FTSE 100

Sky News – Apple’s stock market surge has hit a fresh milestone as its value overtook that of the entire FTSE 100 index of UK-listed companies.

The iPhone maker’s market capitalisation hit $2.2trn (£1.6trn) after a “stock-split” – a move that makes owning its pricey shares more accessible for ordinary retail investors.

S&P 500, Nasdaq set to rise at open as focus turns to factory surveys

(Reuters) – The S&P 500 was looking at a higher open on Tuesday, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq on track to scale a new peak as Apple climbed and positive manufacturing sector surveys in China and Europe set the tone for upcoming U.S. factory activity data.

MPs go back to work, as the prime minister urges the rest of the UK to do the same

Sky News – Boris Johnson is facing one of the toughest tests of his premiership as he attempts to persuade parents to send children back to school and workers to return to their offices.

On the day MPs return to the Commons after the summer recess, schools in England and Wales are re-opening, with the government desperately hoping for a mass return to classrooms.

Easyjet and Intl Consolidated Air push FTSE 100 lower

In early trading, British Airways (IAG) and EasyJet both fall sharply on Tuesday morning with IAG down over -7.00% and Easyjet down -4.00% pushing the index near to 5,900 points.

FTSE 100 likely to fall after Bank Holiday closure

Futures: The FTSE 100 is likely to open slightly down on Tuesday morning after London markets were closed for the Bank Holiday weekend.

Hong Kong, mainland stocks choppy in early trading, as investors weigh dip in US markets, Covid-19 surge against upbeat China economic data

South China Morning Post – The Hong Kong and mainland China stock markets see-sawed in early trading on Tuesday, as investors weighed a dip in US markets and an uptick in coronavirus cases globally against signs of economic recovery in China.

Asian stocks edge up after strong China manufacturing survey

SYDNEY/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Asian stocks edged higher on Tuesday after strong readings on China’s vast manufacturing sector offset the weak lead from a softer Wall Street session.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.3%, to regain some ground lost on Monday.

The Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong traded 0.3% higher while the Shanghai Composite also recovered early losses to stand 0.1% higher. Japan’s Nikkei 225 erased early losses to trade flat.