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Coronavirus

Daily News

Updates

Daily News Updates:

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

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CORONAVIRUS DAILY NEWS & MARKET UPDATES

Friday 28 August 2020

Dollar Weakens, Dow Futures Rise as Japan’s PM To Exit and Investors Absorb Fed Policy Shift

MarketWatch – U.S. stock futures rose on Friday as the dollar fell on the prospect of lower-for-longer interest rates by the Federal Reserve and amid yen strength after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he would step down.

Japan’s PM Abe resigns as coronavirus hits economy, endangers legacy

TOKYO (Reuters) – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Japan’s longest-serving premier, announced his resignation because of poor health on Friday, ending a stint at the helm of the world’s third-biggest economy in which he sought to revive growth and bolster its defences.

Abe has battled the disease ulcerative colitis for years and two recent hospital visits within a week had fanned questions on whether he could stay in the job until the end of his term as ruling party leader, and hence, premier, in September 2021.

“I cannot continue being prime minister if I do not have the confidence that I can carry out the job entrusted to me by the people,” Abe, 65, told a news conference as he announced his decision to step down.

After dipping below 6,000 points, FTSE 100 futures anticipate the index opening-up on Friday

At 7.30 am current futures, indicate the FTSE 100 in London will open up 30-40 points on Friday morning.

The index dropped below 6,000 points on Thursday and while markets in Hong Kong and China are trading up the potential impact of news that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is resigning in Japan, could knock sentiment for the last trading day of August.

Hong Kong stocks gain, as Xiaomi continues to surge after being tapped for Hang Seng Index

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks rose in early trading, with Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi continuing to soar before being added to the Hang Seng Index.

Nikkei tumbles, yen firms on news Japan’s Abe set to resign

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Nikkei fell as much as 2% before recouping some losses and the yen rose on Friday on news that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was set to resign.

A person familiar with the matter said Abe, the nation’s longest serving premier, had decided to step down.

Public broadcaster NHK earlier said Abe, who has battled the disease ulcerative colitis for years, wanted to avoid causing problems for the government due to the worsening of his condition.

Abe was scheduled to hold a news conference at 5:00 p.m. (0800 GMT).

Overpayments ‘rip-off’ on phone contracts could cost you more than £400 a year, Which? says

Sky News – A third of mobile phone customers are still being charged the full price of their contract – even after paying off the cost of their handset, Which? has warned.

The consumer rights group is calling for networks to end the “overpayments rip-off”, which costs an estimated £182m a year. It estimates some Britons could be out of pocket to the tune of more than £400 annually.

Sky News Live

Thursday 27 August 2020

Eat Out to Help Out is coming to an end – here are some restaurants that will still offer the discount

Sky News – A number of chains and independent restaurants will continue to offer 50% off food when the government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme ends.

More than 64 million meals have been claimed since the scheme was introduced to help the struggling hospitality industry during the coronavirus pandemic.

Stock-index futures edge lower as investors await speech by Fed’s Powell

MarketWatch – Stock-index futures edged lower early Thursday as investors awaited a speech by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell that’s expected to mark a historic shift in the central bank’s monetary policy framework.

The latest U.S. weekly data on jobless benefit claims will also be in focus too a day after the S&P 500 index and the Nasdaq Composite logged the latest in a series of all-time highs.

Trump says he saved 51 million jobs in pandemic. Economists, U.S. officials say otherwise

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Standing before half a dozen American flags during a press conference at his country club in Bedminster, New Jersey, President Donald Trump heralded what has become a central plank of his argument for re-election in November: his administration’s handling of the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The estimate that the $660 billion taxpayer-funded Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) saved some 51 million jobs has been trumpeted by the Republican Party, its Congressional leadership and the president’s reelection campaign. On Monday, Trump touted it again at a rally west of Charlotte, North Carolina, site of the Republican National Convention.

TikTok’s boss quits amid Trump pressure on Chinese-owned app

Sky News – The new chief executive of TikTok has quit amid pressure from Donald Trump for the video app’s Chinese owner to sell it.

Kevin Mayer, who has been in the job for less than three months, said in a letter to employees that the “political environment has sharply changed”.

London stocks slip on glum earnings ahead of Jackson Hole

(Reuters) – London-listed shares retreated on Thursday as earnings updates from firms including Rolls-Royce underlined the extent of the corporate damage from the COVID-19 pandemic ahead of the annual Jackson Hole central bankers’ conference later in the day.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 .FTSE and the mid-cap FTSE 250 .FTMC fell 0.2% each, with banks .FTNMX8350, insurers .FTNMX8530 and real estate stocks .FTUB8600 leading the declines.

After Wednesday’s small gain FTSE 100 futures are flat on Thursday morning

Thirty minutes before the London markets open FTSE 100 futures are 10 points down from Wednesday’s close of 6,045.

Asia-Pacific markets remain subdued with the Nikkei 225 in Japan down -0.35% and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong down -1.05% in the afternoon trading session.

The SSE Composite index in China is currently up +0.34% making up for some of Wednesday’s loses.

Hang Seng Index sheds 1 per cent as Covid-19 weighs on sentiment

South China Morning Post – The Hang Seng Index fell 0.8 per cent to 25,282.12 as it continues to struggle to kick above the 25,500 mark.

Asia shares pause for breath, lot riding on Fed

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Asian shares touched two-year peaks on Thursday in the wake of Wall Street’s record run as cheap cash drove up big-cap tech darlings, although Sino-U.S. tensions caused caution to creep in as the session progressed.

Japan’s Nikkei .N225 eased 0.4% from levels not seen since mid-February, while South Korea .KS11 fell 0.8% as a jump in coronavirus cases ended four days of rises.

The Dow .DJI ended Wednesday up 0.3%, while the S&P 500 .SPX climbed 1.02% and the Nasdaq .IXIC 1.73%. Gains were again concentrated in the tech majors with Netflix Inc (NFLX.O) surging 11.6% and Facebook Inc (FB.O) 8.2%.

Wednesday 26 August 2020 Morning Brief

Energy stocks drag FTSE 100 lower ahead of Jackson Hole

(Reuters) – The FTSE 100 slipped on Wednesday, weighed by a sell-off in stocks ranging from energy to consumer staples and financials, while investor attention turned to an annual central bankers’ conference later in the week.

FTSE 100 futures flat on Wednesday morning

Current futures are indicating the FTSE 100 will open flat on Wednesday morning, but the index is unlikely to remain that way.

Asia-Pacific markets are mainly flat entering the afternoon session; however, China’s SSE Composite index is down -1.50% even on the back of positive news relating to the U.S./China trade talks.

Eat Out to Help Out scheme leads to 64 million meals claimed in three weeks

Sky News – More than 64 million meals have been claimed since the government launched the Eat Out to Help Out discount scheme at the start of August.

It has provided diners with a state-funded 50% discount on food and soft drinks between Mondays and Wednesdays, up to a maximum of £10 per person, for the whole month.

Hong Kong tech stocks gain as Ant Group files for IPO that could mark the world’s biggest fundraising ever

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong tech stocks gained on Wednesday as Jack Ma’s Ant Group filed for dual listings in the city and in Shanghai while overnight US equities hit all-time highs for the third consecutive session.

The Hang Seng Index see-sawed between small gains and losses, and inched up 0.01 per cent to 25,489.82 after the lunch break, after posting a small loss Tuesday. The benchmark is trying to close above 25,500, which it did on Monday for the first time in about five weeks. The resistance level has been stubborn.

Global stocks steady, bonds sold as markets turn to Jackson Hole

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Bonds sold off and stocks took a breather on Wednesday as investors waited to hear from the Federal Reserve about its next moves to support the U.S. economic recovery, while oil jumped to a five-month peak as a hurricane disrupted output in the Gulf of Mexico.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS edged down 0.1%, retreating slightly from a two-year high hit on Tuesday. Japan’s Nikkei .N225 was off 0.1%.

Tuesday 25 August 2020

After a positive start to the week, FTSE 100 futures indicate the index will open up on Tuesday

With thirty minutes before London markets open FTSE 100 futures are anticipating the index will open up 20-30 points on Tuesday morning after Monday’s +1.71% gain.

Hong Kong, China stocks turn down; US-China officials see ‘progress’ on trade deal, hopes rise for Covid-19 vaccine

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong and mainland stocks  slipped on profit taking, as markets had already priced in the big news of the morning – a positive phone call between US and China officials on the phase one trade deal.

The Hang Seng Index fell 0.5 per cent to 25,416.36 at the noon lunch break. It was unable to breach the resistance level at 25,500, said Alan Li, portfolio manager at Atta Capital.

The Shanghai Composite Index turned down, falling 0.2 per cent to 3,379 at the 11.30am lunch break in the mainland. 

Asian stocks boosted by fresh U.S.-China trade hopes

SINGAPORE/HONG KONG (Reuters) – Asian stock markets were mostly higher on Tuesday after the U.S and China indicated progress in trade talks, and as hopes of new coronavirus treatments boosted broader sentiment among global investors.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.1% and was trading just below a two-year high.

Japan’s Nikkei rose 1.4%, while banking stocks led Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 up 0.34%.

Futures suggest a positive start to Europe’s trading day, with Euro STOXX 50 futures up 0.4% and FTSE futures up 0.3%. S&P 500 futures extended modest gains in Asia and were last up 0.4%.

Monday 24 August 2020

FTSE 100 tracks Asia gains on virus treatment hopes; AstraZeneca jumps

(Reuters) – The FTSE 100 jumped on Monday, tracking Asian markets as U.S. health regulators authorised a COVID-19 treatment over the weekend, while AstraZeneca rose on a report the U.S. government was considering fast-tracking its experimental vaccine.

FTSE 100 index opens up 1.00% on Monday

The FTSE 100 surged at the 8.00 am opening with the index up over +1.00% and heading for the 6,100 points mark.

European futures indicate a positive start to the week

Asia-Pacific markets have started the week on the front foot, and FTSE 100 futures are estimating the index will be up 35-45 points half an hour before London markets open on Monday morning.

Coronavirus: Trump wants to fast-track Oxford’s potential COVID-19 vaccine in time for election – report

Sky News – US President Donald Trump is considering fast-tracking approval of a possible coronavirus vaccine so it can be used before the election, according to a report.

The administration is looking at the potential vaccine being developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca, the Financial Times says.

Hong Kong, China stocks climb on report US companies can still do business in China on WeChat, ChiNext reforms kick in

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong and mainland stocks climbed at the start of the week, as a media report said US companies will be allowed to use WeChat in China and a slew of new companies debuted on the Nasdaq-like ChiNext under looser rules.

The Hang Seng Index rose 1.5 per cent to 25,483.06 at the lunch break on Monday, led by communication services, consumer staples and real estate stocks. Only six stocks on the 50-member benchmark posted morning losses.

Global stocks jump as investors pin hopes on coronavirus treatment

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Asian shares advanced for a second straight session on Monday, underpinned by coronavirus hopes after the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) authorised the use of blood plasma from recovered patients as a treatment option.

Japan’s Nikkei .N225 reversed early losses to be last up 0.4%. Chinese shares rose too with the blue-chip CSI 300 index .CSI300 adding 0.8%.

Friday 21 August 2020

Coronavirus: We hope this pandemic will be over in two years, WHO chief says

Sky News – The head of the World Health Organisation says he hopes the coronavirus pandemic will be over in two years.

The Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 took two years to end, he said.

“At the same time we have the technology and knowledge to stop it.”

FTSE 100 ends the week down but above 6,000 points

The FTSE 100 index ended the day slightly down at -0.19% and down -1.55% for the week. Significantly the index finished the week above the 6,000 point market by a 1.89 point margin.

U.S. business activity surges to early 2019 levels: Markit flash PMI

NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. business activity snapped back to the highest since early 2019 this month as companies in both the manufacturing and services sectors saw a resurgence in new orders even as new COVID-19 cases remain stubbornly high across the country, a purchasing managers’ survey showed on Friday.

Data firm IHS Markit said its flash U.S. Composite PMI Index rose to a reading of 54.7 this month – the highest since February 2019 – from 50.3 in July. Its flash – or preliminary – indicator for the manufacturing sector stood at its highest since January 2019 and for the services sector it was the highest since March 2019.

Coronavirus: Tax hikes may be inevitable as cuts alone will not wipe away debt on this scale

Sky News – The national debt passing £2trn is a moment to relish for fans of round numbers, but there is not much else to enjoy about the mind-boggling landmark.

Given the scale of ongoing intervention required to tackle coronavirus, and the level of debt before the crisis, it was inevitable that the figure would be passed.

FTSE 100 may fall below the 6,000 point mark on Friday

With half an hour before London markets open and FTSE 100 futures indicate the index may drop below 6,000 points on Friday morning.

Markets in Asia are trading up after positive gains in the U.S on Thursday, and European futures are indicating positive gains in European markets.

Borrowing hits record £150.5bn between April and July as COVID-19 spending soared

Sky News – Borrowing has rocketed to a record £150.5bn in the current financial year due to soaring spending caused by the coronavirus crisis.

The figure is £128.4bn more than between April and July last year and is the highest for the period since current records began in 1993.

Hong Kong stocks boosted by US tech rally, Alibaba blowout earnings

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong and mainland stocks gained in early trading as investor sentiment got a boost from a tech rally in the US and e-commerce giant Alibaba’s blowout earnings.

The Hang Seng Index rose 1.4 per cent to 25,133.92 at 11.45am on Friday. It is on track for a weekly loss, after seeing a 2.7 per cent weekly gain last week, which followed four weekly losses. The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.8 per cent at its lunch break.

Record-breaking stocks take a breather, data weighs on dollar

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Stock markets rebounded on Friday following Wall Street’s lead, but were set for their softest week in about a month as investors grapple with tepid economic data and lofty valuations after a huge rally that has wiped out coronavirus losses.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS rose 1.1% on Friday, as indexes in Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong repaired Thursday’s losses. However, the broad gauge is poised to end the week barely ahead of where it began.

Japan’s Nikkei .N225 edged up 0.4% but was headed for a 1.4% weekly drop, while a bond market selloff has also moderated as caution and summer-time lassitude weighs on the mood.

Thursday 20 August 2020

Rise in U.S. weekly jobless claims clouds labor market recovery

(Reuters) – The number of Americans filing a new claim for unemployment benefits rose unexpectedly back above the 1 million mark last week, a setback for a struggling U.S. job market crippled by the coronavirus pandemic.

Still, in a sign some rehiring is underway, the rolls of those continuing to receive jobless benefits is slowly declining, the Labor Department reported on Thursday, and other data indicated a recovery from the recession triggered by COVID-19 continues, though at a more fitful pace than earlier.

Coronavirus: Just one in six back in the office in cities as Boris Johnson’s ‘return to work’ plea ignored

Sky News – Just one in six workers have gone back to work in cities this summer after companies and staff ignored government pleas to return, leaving economic activity deeply depressed and placing thousands of small businesses at risk of collapse.

Figures compiled for Sky News reveal that worker footfall in Britain’s cities was just 17% of pre-lockdown levels in the first two weeks of August.

FTSE 100 ends the day down nearly 100 points

Another disappointing day on global stock markets, with the FTSE 100 index was down -1.61% at the close just hovering above the 6,000 points market.

The trading started badly with Asia-Pacific markets trading down.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan ended the day down -1.00% and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong down -1.54%.

China’s leading SSE Composite index also dropped and ended the day down -1.30%.

Current markets in the U.S are flat with the Dow Jones and S&P 500 trading up +0.08% and +0.09% respectively at the start of the afternoon session.

Oil and stocks fall as markets still rattled by Fed minutes

LONDON (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve’s doubts over the U.S. economic recovery kept markets in the red on Thursday, even though European stock indexes spent the morning recovering from initial losses.

Coronavirus: Qantas posts £1bn loss as rocked by COVID-19 turbulence

Sky News – Qantas has posted an annual loss of £1bn as it wrestles with the global travel havoc caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Australian airline’s chief executive Alan Joyce said trading conditions were the worst in the carrier’s 100-year history, with COVID-19 having “punched” a £2.2bn hole in its revenue.

Hong Kong stocks on track for biggest fall in a month as AIA reports worse-than-expected decline in new business

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks were on track for their biggest drop in a month as insurance giant AIA reported a worse-than-expected decline in new business and the US suspended extradition and other pacts with the city over its new national security law.

AIA, only second to Tencent in weighting on the benchmark Hang Seng Index, plunged 4.5 per cent on Thursday after reporting the value of its new business fell 37 per cent in the first six months of the year compared to the same period in 2019, worse than Bloomberg-tracked analysts’ estimate of a 30 per cent drop. It blamed the coronavirus for hurting face-to-face policy sales. AIA’s fall was the second-biggest on the index.

FTSE 100 futures drop after the U.S. cautious economic forecast

An hour before the London markets open current FTSE 100 futures have the index opening down 60-70 points.

The index is likely to be again hovering around the 6,000 points mark.

Asian stocks slump, gold jumps after dovish Fed

TOKYO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Asian equities and U.S. futures fell on Thursday, hurt by the U.S. Federal Reserve’s cautious view of the economy, tensions with China and new clusters of coronavirus infections.

Australian stocks dropped 0.91% due to concern that ties with China will worsen further after a report that Australian regulators will reject acquisitions by a Chinese company.

Shares in China .CSI300 fell 1.28% due to dwindling expectations for additional monetary easing after the People’s Bank of China kept a benchmark lending rate unchanged on Thursday.

Japanese stocks .N225 slid 1.06%. South Korean stocks .KS11 tumbled 3.26%, the biggest daily decline since June 15, amid a spike in coronavirus cases in Seoul.

Dow futures down nearly 200 points after Fed minutes note concerns

MarketWatch – U.S. stock index futures sank Wednesday night, after stocks fell on Wall Street following Fed minutes that revealed concern over the economic outlook. 

Wednesday 19 August 2020

China’s Weak Consumer Recovery Is Bad for China—And World Trade

MarketWatch – The economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic have been radically different across countries, a dynamic that sets the world up for trade trouble, especially between China, the U.S., and Europe.

After the coronavirus first emerged in China, retail spending plunged about 25% on a seasonally adjusted basis between December 2019 and February 2020, while manufacturing output dropped about 20%. That’s almost exactly what happened in the U.S. between the economy’s peak in February and the bottom in April. (Production and consumption both dropped 30% in Europe.)

Coronavirus: Apple market value tops $2trn for the first time

Sky News – Apple has seen its market value hit $2trn for the first time as shares in US tech companies enjoy a surge in popularity amid the coronavirus crisis.

The iPhone maker’s stock reached the milestone, topping $468 per share, during early trading on Wall Street following a leap of almost 60% in the value of its shares during the year to date.

London’s FTSE 100 ends higher, Hochschild keeps mid-caps in the red

(Reuters) – London’s FTSE 100 closed higher on Wednesday as the exporter-heavy index benefited from a slightly weaker pound, while a drop in Hochschild Mining’s share put pressure on the mid-cap FTSE 250.

The London blue chip index .FTSE ended 0.6% higher, with shares in British Airways-owner IAG (ICAG.L) jumping 7.6% after the British government said it was working with London’s Heathrow Airport to shorten quarantine.

Coronavirus: Heathrow Airport unveils plans for COVID-19 testing facility to replace quarantine measures

Sky News – Health Secretary Matt Hancock has said ministers are working with Heathrow Airport to find a way for coronavirus testing to reduce the quarantine period.

It comes as the airport unveiled plans for a new testing facility which it hopes will lead to the end of the mandatory 14-day quarantine for travellers returning from countries which have been removed from the UK’s safe list.

FTSE 100 dips as lower oil prices hit BP, Shell

(Reuters) – London’s FTSE 100 dipped on Wednesday as lower oil prices dented trading in energy stocks, while investors digested a surprise rise in domestic inflation last month.

European stock market futures looking flat on Wednesday

With the late opening of the Hang Seng in Hong Kong European futures looked likely to open Wednesday on a positive note. However, the index has dropped -1.00% in the afternoon sessions dragging futures down in Europe.

Currently with an hour before the London markets open, FTSE 100 futures are trading around Tuesday’s close of 6,076.

Hong Kong stocks slide as market reopens after Typhoon Higos, with Trump’s latest salvo weighing on sentiment

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks slid as trading resumed on Wednesday afternoon after the morning session was cancelled by the strongest typhoon this year.

Asian markets mixed; Nikkei up as ugly export data not as bad as feared

MarketWatch – Stocks were mixed in Asia on Wednesday after the S&P 500 logged a fresh all-time high.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 NIK, 0.32% advanced 0.3% after data showed Japanese exports in July slid 19.2% from a year earlier. Markets in Hong Kong were closed due to a tropical storm.

Tuesday 18 August 2020

European shares fall as U.S.-China tensions, virus cases rise

(Reuters) – European shares fell on Tuesday as investors worried about escalating U.S.-China tensions and a resurgence in regional coronavirus cases, knocking shares of growth-sensitive cyclical sectors lower.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.5% by 0713 GMT, with banks .SX7P, energy firms .SX7E, insurers .SXIP and automakers .SXAP falling between 0.8% and 0.9%.

Asian stocks made cautious gains after the Trump administration said it will tighten curbs on China’s Huawei Technologies Co, to crack down on its access to commercially available chips, while ratcheting up tensions with Beijing.

Coronavirus: Marks & Spencer to cut 7,000 jobs after ‘material shift’ in trading

Sky News – Marks & Spencer plans to cut 7,000 jobs over the next three months as part of a shake-up in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.

The retailer said it was acting to reflect a “material shift” in trading prompted by the pandemic, as it also revealed a steep drop in sales.

Hong Kong, China stocks gain as investors weigh latest US arrow shot at Huawei against blowout earnings by JD.com

South China Morning Post – Under new rules issued by the US Commerce Department on Monday, any company that sells Huawei any products made anywhere with US technology will require a licence. The new measures are meant to prevent Huawei from being able to evade US export controls by obtaining electronic parts through third parties.

Asian markets mixed after tech rally takes S&P 500 near record

MarketWatch – Shares were mixed in Asia on Tuesday, after buying of technology stocks nudged the S&P 500 closer to the record high it set in February before the pandemic crunched the global economy.

Monday 17 August 2020

If history repeats, the stock market will close at a new high by the end of August

MarketWatch – The S&P 500 index made two failed attempts last week to take out its record close from February, causing some investors to worry the rally is running out of steam. History, on the other hand, suggests market bulls shouldn’t be too quick to throw in the towel.

Miners lift FTSE 100 for first time in three days on China stimulus

(Reuters) – London’s FTSE 100 index ended higher for the first time in three sessions on Monday as more stimulus in China powered mining stocks, while investors eyed a slate of economic data due later in the week to gauge the pace of a post-pandemic rebound.

The commodity-heavy FTSE 100 was up 0.8%, with miners Rio Tinto Plc (RIO.L), BHP Group Plc (BHPB.L) and Anglo American Plc (AAL.L) adding between 1.7% and 2.4%.

Coronavirus: Ryanair to cut capacity by 20% as restrictions tighten

Sky News – Ryanair is cutting flight capacity by a fifth in September and October as travel restrictions to some European countries tighten.

The airline said the decision came after forward bookings “notably weakened over the last 10 days” amid continued uncertainty over coronavirus case rates.

Wall Street kicks off big retail earnings week on high note

(Reuters) – U.S. stocks opened higher on Monday with the S&P 500 inching closer to a record high as retailers prepared to wind down a better-than-feared quarterly earnings season.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 39.03 points, or 0.14%, at the open to 27,970.05. The S&P 500 opened higher by 8.01 points, or 0.24%, at 3,380.86, while the Nasdaq Composite gained 63.94 points, or 0.58%, to 11,083.25 at the opening bell.

Japan’s record economic plunge wipes out Abe era gains

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan was hit by its biggest economic slump on record in the second quarter as the coronavirus pandemic emptied shopping malls and crushed demand for cars and other exports, bolstering the case for bolder policy action to prevent a deeper recession.

The third straight quarter of declines knocked the size of real gross domestic product (GDP) to decade-low levels, wiping out the benefits brought by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s “Abenomics” stimulus policies deployed in late 2012.

FTSE 100 futures slightly lower on Monday morning

Current market FTSE 100 futures have the index opening lower by 10 points on Monday morning.

European futures also indicate significant indices in the region will open flat.

Coronavirus: UK’s £37bn July house-buying boom sees busiest month of sales in a decade

Sky News – More than £37bn worth of property sales were agreed in July – the busiest month for home buying for 10 years, according to property website Rightmove.

Hong Kong, China shares rise after central bank pumps US$100 billion into banking system, US-China trade deal review is postponed

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong and China shares gained after China’s central bank injected liquidity into the financial markets to support banks on Monday and a US-China trade deal review was postponed over the weekend, even as tensions continued to mount between the world’s two largest economies.

Asian markets rise, though Nikkei sinks after Japan’s record contraction

MarketWatch – Japanese stocks sank while other Asian markets gained Monday after Japan reported a record economic contraction as the coronavirus pandemic weighed on retailing, investment and exports.

Investors in Asia looked ahead to central bank meetings this week in China, Indonesia and the Philippines, with few other market-moving events in sight.

Friday 14 August 2020

Wall Street futures retreat as China data disappoints

(Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures retreated on Friday with attention turning to retail sales figures for signs of a domestic rebound after Chinese figures pointed to a wobbly economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

China’s economic recovery underwhelms as consumer comeback stays elusive

BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s retail sales slipped in July, dashing expectations for a modest rise, as consumers in the world’s second-largest economy failed to shake off wariness about the coronavirus, while the factory sector’s recovery struggled to pick up pace.

Asian markets pulled back on Friday following the disappointing set of economic indicators, which raised concerns about the fragility of China’s emergence from coronavirus.

China’s recovery had been gaining momentum after the pandemic paralysed huge swathes of the economy as pent-up demand, government stimulus and surprisingly resilient exports revived activity.

Coronavirus: Quarantine extension ‘another devastating blow’ to travel industry

Sky News – Extending quarantine to a further six nations, including France, is “another devastating blow” to the travel industry already reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic, it has been warned.

The decision to impose restrictions on one of the biggest destinations for holidaymakers at the height of summer, having already done so to Spain, will lead to job losses unless urgent targeted support is provided by the government, according to the trade.

London stocks slide as quarantine rules hit easyJet, British Airways

(Reuters) – London-listed shares fell on Friday as EasyJet and British Airways tumbled after the UK imposed fresh quarantine measures on travellers from France and other countries, taking the shine off a strong week of stock market gains.

FTSE 100 drops 50 points on opening

Market futures indicated a flat opening for the FTSE 100 on Friday morning, but with more countries added to the quarantine list, the index is currently -1.00% down at 8.30 am.

FTSE 100 likely to open flat on Friday morning

With an hour to go before markets open in London, FTSE 100 futures indicate the index will open flat after Thursday’s drop of -1.50%.

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region are showing that Friday may be a quiet day with traders waiting for more details on the U.S. stimulus package.

Coronavirus: France, Malta and Netherlands added to UK’s travel quarantine list

Sky News – Hundreds of thousands of Britons have had their holidays left in disarray after France, Malta and the Netherlands were among several countries added to the UK’s quarantine list.

Travellers returning from those countries – as well as Monaco, Turks & Caicos and Aruba – must self-isolate for 14 days on arrival in the UK.

Hong Kong, mainland stocks fluctuate as traders weigh mixed economic data out of China

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong and mainland stocks swung between gains and losses as investors weighed mixed China data showing industrial production growing and retail sales still weak.

Asian markets muted as traders warily await U.S. stimulus deal

MarketWatch – Asian markets were little changed in early trading Friday, after stocks fell on Wall Street as the stalemate over a second coronavirus-aid plan continued to fester on Capitol Hill.

Asian stocks were muted as U.S. lawmakers’ “political grandstanding delay is posing some risk for the global recovery,” wrote Stephen Innes, chief global markets strategist at AxiCorp, in a note. “Still, there is no chance of this deal not going through … and one thing investors feel confident about is that they like stocks higher, so look for dips to be bought on the expectation of the deal eventually going through.”

Thursday 13 August 2020

Ex-dividend trading trips FTSE 100; travel firm TUI slumps

(Reuters) – The FTSE 100 fell for the first time in five days on Thursday as a clutch of blue-chip firms traded ex-dividend, while travel firm TUI slid after posting a quarterly loss of 1.1 billion euros due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In China, fears of financial Iron Curtain as U.S. tensions rise

SHANGHAI/BEIJING (Reuters) – A sharp escalation in tensions with the United States has stoked fears in China of a deepening financial war that could result in it being shut out of the global dollar system – a devastating prospect once considered far-fetched but now not impossible.

Chinese officials and economists have in recent months been unusually public in discussing worst-case scenarios under which China is blocked from dollar settlements, or Washington freezes or confiscates a portion of China’s huge U.S. debt holdings.

Those concerns have galvanised some in Beijing to revive calls to bolster the yuan’s global clout as it looks to decrease reliance on the greenback.

FTSE 100 futures indicated a drop in the index on Thursday

Current FTSE 100 futures are anticipating the index will drop between 70-80 points on Thursday morning after four days of gains for the market.

US maintains tariffs in EU trade fight but postpones hikes

Sky News – The United States has held off on a threat to expand a 16-year old trade fight with the European Union over trade subsidies.

US Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer confirmed the Trump administration would maintain 15% tariffs on Airbus aircraft and 25% tariffs on other European goods imposed last year following a World Trade Organisation (WTO) ruling.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fluctuates as traders brace for China data and assess economic outlook

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks swung between gains and losses, as traders await the release of China’s July economic data and weighed the strength of the global economy after US equities approached all-time highs.

Asian markets rise after Wall Street’s latest rally

MarketWatch – Asian markets mostly gained in early trading Thursday, after tech stocks led a rally on Wall Street.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 NIK, 1.85% rose 1.9% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index HSI, -0.03% slipped 0.1%. The Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, 0.52% was about flat, as was the smaller-cap Shenzhen Composite 399106, 0.56% . South Korea’s Kospi 180721, 0.56% rose 0.7% and benchmark indexes in Taiwan Y9999, +0.73% , Singapore STI, 1.42% and Indonesia JAKIDX, +0.09% were mostly higher. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, -0.88% fell 0.7%.

Wednesday 12 August 2020

FTSE 100 up 2.04% even with one of the worst GDP figures on record

The hope of a V-shaped recovery and better than expected UK GDP figures lifted the FTSE 100 index by +2.04%, ending the day on 6,280 points.

In the U.S. the Dow Jones and S&P 500 are both trading up after Tuesday’s fall, and the Tech geared NASDAQ index is trading up over +2.00% in the afternoon session.

Current Asia-Pacific market futures are indicating that the Nikkei 225, Hang Seng and SSE Composite will all open positive on Thursday morning. However, Donald Trump still has time to put a spanner in the works before we all wake up tomorrow morning.

U.S. Futures jump as higher oil prices boost energy stocks

(Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures rose on Wednesday following a pullback on Wall Street in the previous session, as resilient fuel demand drove up oil prices, while investors remained on edge due to a stalemate over the next coronavirus federal aid bill.

Coronavirus: The GDP figures are dire – but the bigger question is what happens next

Sky News – So it’s official – Britain is in recession.

Except that this is unlike any recession any of us have experienced.

Stimulus bets lift FTSE 100 after record collapse in output

(Reuters) – London’s FTSE 100 rose on Wednesday as investors counted on the central bank to further loosen monetary policy after data showed the economy entered a recession in the second quarter with a record 20% plunge in output.

The export-laden FTSE 100 .FTSE was up 0.3%, also helped by a weaker pound, while the mid-cap FTSE 250 .FTMC hovered at two-month highs.

FTSE 100 index likely to open flat on Wednesday morning

Thirty minutes before the opening of London markets, FTSE 100 futures have the index opening flat after yesterday’s +1.71% gain.

On Wednesday markets in the Asia-Pacific region opened down but have picked up in the afternoon session with the Nikkei 225 up +0.40% and the Hang Seng +0.90%.

The SSE Composite index in China is still suffering due to US-China relations and is currently down -0.90%.

Coronavirus: ‘Largest UK recession on record’ – official figures

Sky News – The UK has been tipped into the “largest recession on record”, according to official figures charting the impact of the coronavirus crisis on the economy.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported that the enforced hibernation of activity through the COVID-19 lockdown meant gross domestic product (GDP) slumped by 20.4% in the second quarter of the year following a dip of 2.2% in the first three months of 2020.

Hang Seng Index slips; tech stocks fall in Hong Kong and mainland China on liquidity tightening

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong suffered a tech sell-off in early trading, with the new technology index falling for a fourth straight session as China continues to tighten liquidity and the tech-heavy Nasdaq in the US fell overnight for the third day.

Asian markets mostly lower after retreat on Wall Street

MarketWatch – Shares were mostly lower in Asia on Wednesday after Wall Street pumped the brakes on its recent rally.

Shares were mostly lower in Asia on Wednesday after Wall Street pumped the brakes on its recent rally.

Friday 7 August 2020

U.S. adds 1.76 million jobs in July as hiring slows after fresh coronavirus outbreak

MarketWatch – The numbers: The torrid pace of U.S. employment growth in the late spring gave way in July to a sharp slowdown in hiring as the economy added back just 1.76 million jobs, underscoring the fragile nature of a recovery with the coronavirus still running rampant in many states.

Chancellor: There is hardship ahead for many people as furlough ends

Sky News – The chancellor has warned there is hardship ahead for many people as the furlough scheme winds down over the next few months.

Rishi Sunak told Sky News that ending the scheme was “one of the most difficult decisions I’ve had to make in this job”.

Asia-Pacific stocks fall on Friday and FTSE 100 futures flat on Friday morning

U.S. President Donald Trump has once again opened up tensions with China over WeChat and Tiktok, banning transaction in American on both the popular apps.

The decision has seen the Hang Seng in Hong Kong trading down -1.68% and the SSE Composite down -1.57% in the afternoon session.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan is currently down -0.60% before the close of the market on Friday.

Currently with an hour before the 8.00 am opening, FTSE 100 futures are indicating the index will open flat but based on the trends in Asia-Pacific markets the index is likely to end the day down due to negative sentiment.

Coronavirus: Businesses demand ‘no surprises’ approach to UK’s local lockdowns

Sky News – Businesses have demanded a “no surprises” approach to the handling of local coronavirus lockdowns following complaints of mixed messages and a lack of communication.

The CBI, which represents 190,000 UK firms, said those caught up in renewed COVID-19 restrictions to date in places such as Leicester had rated the implementation as “mixed at best” to date – risking confusion and further damage to the UK’s economic recovery.

Hong Kong stocks on track for biggest drop in 11 weeks as US clampdown on Chinese apps hits Tencent, other tech shares

South China Morning Post – The Hang Seng Index fell 2.3 per cent to 24,364.43 at the lunch break, putting it on track for its worst fall in 11 weeks.

New data from China backed up earlier signals that China’s economy is recovering from the virus.

Asian markets skid as China-U.S. trade tensions rise

MarketWatch – TOKYO — Asian shares were mostly lower Friday in lacklustre trading, as trade tensions between the U.S. and China offset optimism about more fiscal stimulus for the ailing U.S. economy.

Investors were also awaiting a U.S. report on jobs later Friday for another gauge of the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. U.S. shares have been rising as investors also waited for Congress and the White House to reach a hoped-for deal on more aid for the American economy.

Thursday 6 August 2020

Job cuts announced by U.S. companies jump 54% in July: report

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. employers announced another 262,649 job cuts in July as the COVID-19 pandemic continued to weigh on demand, the latest indication that the labor market recovery is losing steam.

Global stock markets on a downturn awaiting U.S. Unemployment data

The FTSE 100 index in London is down -2.00% at the being of the afternoon session wiping out Tuesday and Wednesday’s gains.

U.S. stock futures indicate markets in America will open down ahead of unemployment and news concerning any new stimulus package for the U.S. economy.

Spotlight on Indonesia’s slow stimulus as economy shrinks

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia’s efforts to support its economy through the coronavirus crisis were being hampered by the slow disbursement of a $50 billion stimulus plan, economists said.The World Bank and Indonesian government have warned that millions more people risk being plunged into poverty amid the pandemic, as data showed the economy shrank for the first time since 1999 in the second quarter.

Bank of England: Economy still set for record slump as rates held

Sky News – The Bank of England has said the UK is still set for a record economic slump due to COVID-19 as it left the interest rate unchanged at 0.1% .

The central bank’s nine-strong Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted unanimously to hold rates as it said it expected Britain’s economy to take longer to get back to its pre-coronavirus size.

After three days of gains, the FTSE 100 is heading for a drop on Thursday

After Wednesday’s +1.14% on the index, the FTSE 100 is likely to open down on Wednesday morning following markets in the Asia-Pacific region.

At 7.15 am current futures have the index opening down between 40 – 50 points.

Planning laws sped up and red tape cut in ‘once in a generation’ shake-up

Sky News – Moves to slash red tape and hand automatic planning permission to some homes – and projects like schools and hospitals – are being unveiled by Boris Johnson.

A radical blueprint hailed as a “once-in-a-generation reform” is being published by the government with the aim of sweeping away “slow and complex” planning laws.

Hong Kong and China stocks fall as US expands its campaign against ‘untrusted’ Chinese apps; Tencent tumbles

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks fell Thursday, with Tencent dragging down the benchmark on fears its WeChat social media app will be swept up in the US “clean network” campaign targeting Chinese-made technology over security concerns.

Asian markets mixed as U.S. talks on stimulus plan stall

MarketWatch – Stocks were mixed in Asia on Thursday despite strong gains overnight on Wall Street, where the rally just kept on rolling.

Investors are watching to see if lawmakers will come ahead with fresh stimulus for the U.S. economy.

Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index NIK, -0.61% shed 0.4% while the Shanghai Composite index SHCOMP, -0.67% gave up 0.7%. Hong Kong HSI, -1.53% lost 1.6%. South Korea’s Kospi 180721, 1.07% added 1% and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, 0.46% added 0.5%.

Wednesday 5 August 2020

Another positive day for the FTSE 100 Index

The FTSE 100 index ended the day up +1.14% finishing the day on 6,104 points.

IAG, the owner of British Airways was the biggest mover of the day with a +10.50% gain on Tuesday’s close.

Fed’s Clarida says economy could reach pre-pandemic levels by end of 2021

NEW YORK (Reuters) – While U.S. economic growth slowed in July, it could pick up in the third quarter and reach pre-pandemic levels by the end of next year, Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Richard Clarida said on Wednesday.

Dow’s 239-point climb led by gains for Walt Disney, Travelers stocks

MarketWatch – The Dow Jones Industrial Average is trading up Wednesday morning with shares of Walt Disney and Travelers delivering strong returns for the price-weighted average. Shares of Walt Disney DIS, 9.59% and Travelers TRV, 1.59% have contributed about a third of the blue-chip gauge’s intraday rally, as the Dow DJIA, 0.98% was most recently trading 239 points higher (0.9%).

Up to 1,500 jobs threatened at WHSmith after drop in customers

Sky News – WHSmith has said it could cut up to 1,500 jobs after the coronavirus pandemic caused a drop in customers going into its stores.

The retailer said group revenues were down 57% in July compared with the same month last year, after its travel business was particularly badly hit by the COVID-19 crisis.

UK businesses grow at fastest pace in five years in July after COVID slump

LONDON (Reuters) – British businesses in the services and manufacturing sectors grew at the fastest rate in more than five years last month as they began to recover from the effect of the COVID-19 lockdown, a survey showed on Wednesday.

The IHS Markit/CIPS final composite Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose to 57.0 from 47.7 in June, its highest since June 2015 and close to the provisional flash reading of 57.1.

Coronavirus: Virgin Atlantic files for US bankruptcy in fight for survival

Sky News – Virgin Atlantic has filed for bankruptcy in the US as part of its bid to survive the coronavirus pandemic that has devastated the aviation industry.

The airline, founded by the tycoon Sir Richard Branson, is seeking protection under a section of the US bankruptcy code, which allows a foreign debtor to shield assets in the country.

FTSE 100 opens up 34 points at 6070

The FTSE 100 in London opened at 8.00 am at 6,070 points, pushing the index to the third day of gains.

FTSE 100 futures indicating a positive opening on Wednesday morning

Thirty minutes before the London market opens FTSE 100 futures are anticipating the index will open up between 20 – 30 points on Wednesday morning.

Britain’s banks brace for $22 billion loan losses as outlook darkens

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s banks took a gloomier view than almost all their European peers in their second quarter earnings, as coronavirus fears, Brexit and low interest rates caused them to bake tougher “worst-case” scenarios into their risk models.   

Coronavirus: Close pubs and shops before schools in any new lockdowns, children’s commissioner says

Sky News – Children should be put “at the heart” of future lockdown plans and schools prioritised over pubs and shops, the children’s commissioner for England has said.

Hong Kong stocks turn up as new economy sector continues to roll; Washington and Beijing will meet to discuss phase one trade deal

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks turned up, buoyed by new economy favourites, while investors weighed fresh data showing continued but slowing recovery in China’s service sector as well as news that US and China officials will meet soon to review their phase one trade deal.

 The Hang Seng Index gained 0.6 per cent to 25,088.36 before the lunch break on Wednesday, after it recorded its biggest rally in two weeks on Tuesday.

The Shanghai Composite Index ended the morning session 0.3 per cent higher at 3,381.35, after ticking up to the highest level since July 14 the day before.

Asian markets mixed after report that U.S., China will meet to talk trade

MarketWatch – The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that high-level talks between U.S. and Chinese officials will be held Aug. 15 to discuss China’s compliance with the trade deal signed in January. China has fallen short of the pace needed to fulfil a pledge to buy more U.S. farm products. China is also said to be likely to bring up concerns over the recent U.S. crackdown against Chinese tech companies.

Tuesday 4 August 2020

A 10% selloff in the stock market is most likely, says expert who called March lows: ‘Something has to give’

MarketWatch US – Michael Wilson, chief U.S. equity strategist at Morgan Stanley, and his colleagues believe that the narrow breadth of winners in the stock market will likely result in a 10% correction before giving way to a renewed rally. The analysts, in a Monday research report, say that either a host of risks that are building beneath the surface of the markets’ unimpeded uptrend — spiking COVID-19 cases, 2020 presidential election uncertainty and nearly unchecked government spending — must be cured or the recent technology-related winners need to fall along with the rest of the market.

1,100 jobs at risk as PizzaExpress looks at closing 67 restaurants

Sky News – PizzaExpress has said it could close around 67 of its UK restaurants, putting up to 1,100 jobs at risk. The chain, which also revealed it has put itself up for sale, blamed the move on the “significantly more challenging environment” caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Gloomy earnings hit European stocks, BP jumps

(Reuters) – European shares slipped on Tuesday as disappointing earnings reports from Diageo and Bayer took the shine off a jump in growth-linked cyclical stocks, while investors awaited signs of progress on more U.S. fiscal stimulus.

After Monday’s gain, FTSE 100 futures have the index opening flat

Although US markets close strong on Monday and Asia-Pacific markets continued the trend current FTSE 100 futures have the market opening flat.

Elsewhere, the futures market have European stocks opening up on Tuesday morning.

BP cuts dividend for first time in a decade after record loss

Sky News – BP has cut its dividend on for the first time in a decade after reporting a record $6.7bn (£5.1bn) loss as the coronavirus pandemic hammered energy demand. The second quarter loss, which was in line with analysts’ expectations, was largely a result of the firm’s decision to wipe $6.5bn (£5bn) off the value of oil and gas exploration assets after it revised down sharply its price forecasts.

Hong Kong stocks rise, on track to break three-session losing streak after US tech rally and latest step in China to bolster economy

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks rose in early morning trading, after US tech stocks gained overnight and China’s central bank vowed to accelerate credit growth to support the economy amid escalating US-China tensions.

Asian markets join global rally as S&P 500 nears record

MarketWatch – Japan’s Nikkei 225 NIK, +1.70% gained 1.4% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index HSI, 1.95% advanced 0.8%. The Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, 0.02% inched up 0.1% and the smaller-cap Shenzhen Composite 399106, -0.90% retreated 0.5%. South Korea’s Kospi 180721, +1.26% gained 1%, and benchmark indexes in Taiwan Y9999, +1.57% , Singapore STI, 1.06% and Indonesia JAKIDX, 1.14% edged up. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, + 1.88% rose 1.7%.

Monday 3 August 2020

After a false start the FTSE 100 looking to finish the day on a high

The leading London index recovered after an initial drop in the market to finish the day back over the 6,000 point market.

The big winners on Monday were Lloyds Banking Group and NatWest along with Hargreaves Landsdown.

The index is trading a 6,027 before the close up +2.20% on Friday’s closing figure.

Dow, S&P 500 rise and Nasdaq hits record to kick off August as stalled stimulus talks come in focus

MarketWatch US – U.S. stocks rose at the start of Monday’s trade to kick off the first trading day of August, with wrangling in Washington over another round of coronavirus stimulus supporting some appetite for large-capitalization technology stocks that have been viewed as more resilient to the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Coronavirus: DW Sports falls into administration – putting 1,700 jobs at risk

Sky News – Sports retailer and gym group DW Sports has said it is to go into administration, putting 1,700 jobs at risk. The company is expected to appoint insolvency specialists on Monday after its income was wiped out by the lengthy closure of stores and gyms during the coronavirus lockdown.

A stock market correction may be imminent, JPMorgan says. Here’s why you shouldn’t panic

MarketWatch US – The typically muted month of August is upon us but there’s still a lot for investors to digest. Talks over another coronavirus stimulus package that would restore jobless benefits to millions of Americans continued into the weekend and will remain in focus this week. However, lawmakers reportedly remain far apart in the negotiations. U.S.-China tensions are also back in the spotlight after President Trump said he would ban Chinese videosharing app TikTok. Technology company Microsoft confirmed talks on Sunday to buy TikTok, owned by Chinese company ByteDance, after a call between Chief Executive Satya Nadella and Trump.

Summer mood swings: global markets turn higher on hopes of virus aid

LONDON (Reuters) – World stocks and the dollar rallied after a cautious European morning as thin summer trading led to sharp swings in the market, and worries about U.S. gridlock over the next round of coronavirus aid eased.

After losing over 5.00% in July 2020 the FTSE 100 likely to open slightly up on Monday

Current FTSE 100 futures have the index opening up on Monday morning on the first day of August trading.

Ten minutes before the 8.00 am opening, futures are indicating a 20 points gain, but FTSE 100 index futures also showed similar opening gains on Thursday and Friday last week. However, the index drop by over -3.50% on the previous two trading days of July 2020.

Asian markets mixed as growth data offsets fears

MarketWatch – Japan’s Nikkei 225 NIK, +2.23% gained 2% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index HSI, -0.82% slid 1%. The Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, 1.32% rose 1% while the smaller-cap Shenzhen Composite 399106, 2.15% surged 1.8%. South Korea’s Kospi 180721, +0.15% was about flat, while benchmark indexes in Taiwan Y9999, -1.19% , Singapore STI, -1.66% and Indonesia JAKIDX, -2.66% sank. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, -0.02% inched up 0.1%.

HSBC profit dives 65% as warns loan losses could hit £10bn

Sky News – HSBC saw its pre-tax profit plummet by 65% in the first of the year as the UK’s largest bank was forced to hike funds to cover bad loans due to the coronavirus. The lender reported profits of $4.3bn (£3.2bn) in the half year to 30 June, down from $12.4bn (£9.5bn) for the same period in 2019.

Hang Seng Index slammed by Covid-19 concerns, aerospace stocks add fuel to Shanghai bourse’s best gain in 17 months

South China Morning Post – Hong Kong stocks started August on a weaker footing, slammed by heightening concerns about Covid-19 infections. Mainland equities, particularly aerospace companies, advanced on hopes for domestic recovery. The Hang Seng Index dropped 1 per cent to 24,362.09 in the morning session, after logging in two straight months of advance. The Shanghai Composite Index jumped 1.1 per cent to 3345.79. It rallied 11 per cent in July, the most since February 2019.

July 2020 Daily News and Updates Archive

Click on the link to see June 2020 updates

Coronavirus: Daily News and Updates July 2020

June 2020 Daily News and Updates Archive

Click on the link to see June 2020 updates

Coronavirus: Daily News and Updates June 2020