At 1207am the FTSE stood at 6384 – down 20 points having been down 36 points 90 minutes ago. We have enjoyed a tremendous run on the rails including a 10-week 14.7% rally since 11th February 2016. The fact that Chinese GDP was revised downwards to 6.3% from 6.7% hardly did wonders for Asian equities. So with oil easing by 2% it is hardly surprising that investors are taking a breather. Personally speaking I am a tad surprised that New York is still relatively effervescent considering ‘Big Blue’ disappointed and inevitably there will be US companies that failing to pass muster during this earnings season. I accept that the retail and banking sector had some ‘heavy shorts’ in place, many of which have been unwound and yes! There is plenty of spare cash sloshing about. The sun is close to being high on the yardarm – so maybe May and June may prove to be rather volatile unless of course US GDP is really starting to crack on.
Banks were up 0.4%; financials and insurance eased by 0.75%; Mining was up 2.4% and oils by 0.6%; drugs were also easier by 1%
Of those companies that reported numbers today they currently stand as follows – GKN +2.5%, Travis Perkins -1.5%, ARM Holdings +2.75%, Punch Taverns +5.5% and N Brown down 13.8%.
Hargreaves Lansdown fell by 3.1%; Tui lost 2.9% and ITV was easier by 2.4%. Rio and BHP led the way for miners both up over 3%.
US futures look to be in a reflective frame of mind (slightly down) with ABBOTT LABS, COCA-COLA, YUM BRANDS!, AMERICAN EXPRESS, MATTEL, BARNES & NOBLE posting interim results.