FTSE 100 likely to stay range bound as renewed virus fears hit markets

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FTSE 100 likely to stay range bound as renewed virus fears hit markets

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 FTSE 100 likely to stay range bound as renewed virus fears hit markets

UK stock markets are likely to open slightly higher on Thursday, 14 January, but are expected to remain range bound as the renewed fears over a possible economic turmoil has disturbed market participants. The latest imposition of lockdowns in the European subcontinent due to the newly-mutated virus strain has once again steered the investors on a back foot from the months-long ride of vaccine optimism.

Equities remain volatile

The ongoing vaccination is being helpful in safeguarding the interest of vulnerable and front line workers but due to the limited outreach of the inoculation drive is likely to take a reasonable time in the widespread distribution across the United Kingdom. Other than Italy, markets across Europe including Switzerland’s SMI, France’s CAC 40, Germany’s DAX, and Spain’s IBEX 35 concluded with marginal upticks after oscillating narrowly on Wednesday.

FTSE 100 stays range bound

London equities have seemingly been a victim of most number of infections due to the new strain of the coronavirus, while the restored conundrum over economic recovery, expectancy of stricter restrictions, and the apparent proposition of negative interest rates have kept the anxiousness alive.

FTSE 100 settled at 6,745.52, down 8.59 points, or 0.13 per cent from the previous close of 6,754.11 after shuttling in a tapered range of 6,772.57 and 6,736.01, respectively, on Wednesday, 13 January.

With a series of macroeconomic data scheduled to be released on Friday and the upcoming set of corporate results have also developed a cautious tone amidst the investor class.

The benchmark FTSE 100 has lost about 1.9 per cent in the last three trading sessions of this week so far, possibly indicating the sombre mood of market participants with regard to the present situations domestically.

Trump impeached twice

Meanwhile, President of the United States Donald Trump has been impeached twice by the House of Representatives following a week after the rampage at Capitol Hill. With the recent charge, Trump has become the only US President who has been impeached twice.

Trump has been charged with incitement of insurrection in the very last days of his role as the President in the While House. Trump has been impeached in connection with the brawl at Capital Hill that happened soon after he delivered a fiery speech at a rally.

The Dow Industrials closed marginally lower at 31,060.47, down 8.22 points, or 0.02 per cent, while Nasdaq Composite settled 56.52 points, or 0.43 per cent higher at 13,128.95 and S&P 500 ended at 3,809.84, up 8.65 points, or 0.23 per cent.

GBP vs USD (14 Jan)

(Source: Refinitiv, Thomson Reuters)

GBP turns flat

The GBP vs USD pair traded almost unchanged on 14 January after the pound sterling recovered from slightly after losing the ground against the greenback on Wednesday. At around 0715 GMT, the GBP to USD pair was trading at 1.3639, up 0.01 per cent at the interbank foreign exchange market on Thursday. The Bank of England had fixed a reference currency conversion rate of 1.3624 USD and 1.1202 EUR against a unit of pound sterling on 12 January.

Commodity check

Commodities staged a fall on Thursday with gold and crude oil trading in the negative territory. Following a series of gains, an ounce of gold was trading at $1,841.17, down 0.22 per cent from the previous close of $1,845.26. Energy market witnessed a marginal correction with Brent crude oil slipping 0.09 per cent to $56.01 per barrel, whereas a barrel of WTI crude was trading at $52.93, down 0.04 per cent.

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