Today was just the sort of trading day I try and avoid like the plague. A day when just a few companies of real clout posting numbers and none involved in M&A activity, trying to read Yellen’s and Fischer’s tea leaves re a rate hike in the US plus a fantastic zero inflation rate for February in the UK – great for the consumer and garbage for business. Then all the sheep went’ baaaaaaaa’ when decent PMI numbers for the EU came out – everyone conveniently forgetting that they rose from a very low base, eventually resulting in the DAX adding 1% and the CAC 0.8%. The Euro subsequently rallied to its highest level for a week – Whoopee! Dementia conveniently set in when the subject of the Greek bail-out was mentioned in despatches.
Of those companies that reported Wolseley closed -2.5% and AG Barr -5%. Centrica recovered a tad from its initial loss of 2% on a Deutsche downgrade to close down 0.75%. After the air crash Airbus lost just 2% and IAG, easyJet and Ryanair ‘cocked a snook’ at market perception – all three gained – +2.5%, +0.8% and +0.2% respectively! It was down to the likes of the old perennials such as Diageo, Reckitt Benckiser, Unilever and BATS to fly the flag of solidarity!