Left Menu
Development News Edition

UPDATE 2-Positive U.S. jobs data, trade relief thrust UK shares higher


UK stock indexes bounced to three-week highs on Friday, lifted by positive U.S. jobs data and news of a new round of talks between Beijing and Washington that raised hopes of a resolution to their protracted trade spat.

The FTSE 100 surged 2.2 percent and the FTSE 250 gained 2.1 percent to bag their biggest weekly gains in two months, showing resilience to a slew of bad macroeconomic and corporate news from China and the U.S. in the first few days of 2019.

Beijing said it would hold vice ministerial-level trade talks with Washington next week, pushing Asian shares higher and easing nerves of investors who have worried that the tussle between the world's two largest economies will slow the global economy.

"The landscape has changed recently and, given the sell-off in US stocks, and the continued weakness in Chinese equities in the past couple of months, both sides may take a softer approach to the talks," said David Madden, analyst at CMC Markets.

Cheer from update on the trade scenario was magnified by strong U.S. jobs data and Fed chair Jerome Powell saying the central bank will be sensitive to the downside risks the market is pricing in.

That helped sectors across the UK to end the session in black.

British stocks with more exposure to Asia rose, with HSBC and Standard Chartered adding 2.4 percent and 3.9 percent, respectively, while luxury goods maker Burberry gained 4.6 percent.

Mondi jumped 5.6 percent after Jefferies analysts said the company was its top pick in the paper and packaging sector, while Whitbread rose 1.7 percent after a Barclays rating upgrade.

MINERS BOUNCE BACK

Miners saw a strong comeback after a dismal last session, with Glencore, Rio Tinto, BHP, Anglo American and Antofagasta all up between 4.1 percent and 6.5 percent on the back of higher copper prices.

Oil prices also rose after news of the upcoming trade talks, boosting heavyweights BP and Shell by 2.3 percent and 1.1 percent.

Among the rare fallers, Fresnillo was 1.5 percent lower at the bottom of FTSE 100 as gold prices fell with investors coming back to equities, and J Sainsbury fell 1.1 percent after an HSBC downgrade.

There was little news on mid-cap companies, although the index is likely to come into focus soon as a parliamentary vote on Prime Minister Theresa May's disputed Brexit deal is on the horizon in the next two weeks.

A survey on Friday suggested that a majority of May's Conservative Party members oppose her Brexit deal with the European Union, less than three months before Britain is due to leaves the bloc.

Elsewhere, house-builder shares shrugged off dismal house price data and gained on a Times report that said demand may improve if a Brexit deal is struck.

Persimmon, Berkeley, Barratt and Taylor Wimpey all rose 2-3 percent on the main index while mid-caps Bovis Homes and Bellway rose 1.8 percent and 2.5 percent, respectively.

"Any chance, however slim, that either the current deal may survive, or even perhaps that Brexit effectively doesn't happen, supports Brexit-sensitive sectors like homebuilders," said Ken Odeluga, City Index analyst.

However, there was little optimism as data on house prices, consumer lending, mortgage approvals and services sector all pointed to a slowdown ahead of Brexit.

The small-cap Circassia Pharmaceuticals dipped 16 percent to a record low after restating its 2019 targets, but recovered some ground to end 9.1 percent down.

AIM-listed Gear4music, which says it is Britain's largest musical instrument and equipment retailer, sank 53 percent after saying it expects lower 2019 core earnings.

(Reporting by Muvija M and Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; editing by Josephine Mason and Kevin Liffey)

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


TRENDING

OPINION/BLOG/INTERVIEW

Hyderabad Encounter: Time to review modern judiciary and restore people’s confidence

Its probably for the first time in the history of independent India, the parliamentarians, chief ministers and ministers in the Union and State governments are openly supporting an encounter. This indicates the people from top to bottom hav...

What happens to your outstanding loans if the bank falls?

... ...

Time for a change! Innovations to stop the growing plastic pollution

As the planet is drowning in plastic pollution, many new innovative approaches and solutions have emerged to effectively deal with the menace....

How to avoid fake universities and fishing bait like Farmington

As education sharks are roaming around to prey, we present a guide on how to mitigate hunters and reach to a genuine universityinstitute. In this era of commercialization of education, the fake universities and economic frauds in educationa...

Videos

Latest News

Data is national asset, it must be protected; digital nationalism need of the hour: SJM

RSS-affiliate the Swadeshi Jagaran Manch SJM said on Sunday that Indian alternatives of payment gateways, social media platforms and service aggregators must be supported and promoted as data sovereignty and data nationalism are the need of...

Kylie Jenner all jazzed up for daughter's second birthday

Global fashion icon Kylie Jenner is all jazzed up for daughter Stormis second birthday bash as she has started planning for the party. Jenners daughter will turn two next year in February. The 22-year-old model took to Twitter to share her ...

Look after my family, kids: Delhi fire victim tells friend in last phone call

Musaraf Ali, one of the 43 people who died in Anaj Mandi inferno on Sunday, made the last phone call to his friend -- Monu, asking him to look after his family and kids. Minutes before his death, 30-year-old Musaraf Ali called up his friend...

Merkel's party blasts SPD before coalition talks

The leader of Chancellor Angela Merkels conservatives sharply criticised attempts by the Social Democrats SPD to push their ruling coalition to the left, accusing her partners of thinking of themselves more than Germany.The two parties will...

Give Feedback