FTSE 100 likely to open lower as renewed Covid tensions jolt confidence

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  • FTSE 100 is expected to open in negative territory on Monday, 19 April
  • UK shares are set to react oppositely as compared its Asian peers
  • India’s Nifty 50 crashed 2.32 per cent after the country saw another record rise in new infections
  • The futures tied to FTSE 100 shed 0.35 per cent in the early deals

The benchmark FTSE 100 is expected to open in negative territory on Monday, 19 April, defying the largely upbeat trading in most of the Asian markets. A new virus variant has been identified by the Public Health England (PHE), related to which 77 cases have been identified in the UK up until 15 April.

The healthcare administration has designated the new strain of coronavirus, initially spotted in India, as Variant Under Investigation (VUI-21APR-01).

UK shares are set to react in an opposite manner as compared to the trading pattern in most of its Asian peers. Barring India’s Nifty 50 and Japan’s Nikkei 225, all other major Asian markets traded in the positive region, with Shanghai Composite emerging as the frontrunner.

According to the data available with various exchanges, Nikkei 225 of Japan slipped 0.11 per cent to 29,650.75, Shanghai Composite of China jumped 1.27 per cent to 3,470.05, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.59 per cent to 29,139.82, Kospi of South Korea turned flat in the late afternoon deals and was trading 0.1 per cent higher at 3,199.18, while ASX 200 of Australia ended 0.03 per cent higher 7,065.60.

Nifty 50 of India crashed 2.32 per cent to 14,278.95 after the country recorded a fresh peak of coronavirus cases. According to the data released by India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the nation has reported 273,810 new Covid-19 infections on Monday. Following the record rise for the tenth straight day, markets retreated very sharply, with the Nifty 50 touching a two-month low of 14,191.40.

FTSE 100 (5-day performance)

(Source: Refinitiv, Thomson Reuters)

Meanwhile, the futures tied to FTSE 100 shed 0.35 per cent, indicating a negative beginning to the London equities on 19 April. Earlier on Friday, Wall Street ended higher with the Dow Industrials and S&P 500 registering fresh closing record highs of 34,200.67 and 4,185.47, respectively. Nasdaq Composite settled marginally higher 14,052.34 as the tech-heavy benchmark witnessed correction in share prices of major companies.

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