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Stocks rebound as trade war fears recede

Stocks have recovered today as it appears the US aren’t as gung-ho about starting a trade war with China as initially feared. 

The mixed messages from Washington DC regarding Chinese investment restrictions in the US has prompted traders to swoop in and snap up relatively cheap stocks today.

Carpetright shares are lower this morning after the company revealed full-year figures that were broadly in line with expectations. Revenue dropped by 3% to £443.8 million, while traders were anticipating a figure of £450.85 million. The firm revealed an underlying pre-tax loss of £8.7 million, following April’s announcement that it expected to post a loss of between £7 million and £9 million. As part of the company voluntary arrangement (CVA), it will close 81 stores by September. Trading in the new financial year continues to be subdued, and disruption caused by restructuring hasn’t helped. The company has, however, laid the groundwork to make a recovery but it will take time to bear fruit.

Sainsbury’s shares are lower today after Kantar announced the supermarket saw sales dip by 0.2% in the 12 weeks until mid-June. According to the research company, Tesco, Asda and Morrisons all saw sales growth of between 1.4% and 1.9% in that time period. The deep-discount retailers are making headway, as Aldi and Lidl posted 8.2% and 10% sales growth respectively. 

Eutelsat confirmed it is not making a bid for Inmarsat, sending shares in the telecommunications company lower. Only yesterday Eutelsat expressed interest in Inmarsat, but that all changed this morning. Earlier this month, EchoStar had a preliminary bid for Inmarsat rejected, and the US firm has until early July to make a formal offer for the company. 

Harley Davidson will be in focus this afternoon after the motorcycle manufacturer revealed it plans to move operations overseas to get around EU tariffs.

GBP/USD is slightly lower as the greenback bounced back after losing ground in recent sessions. Prospective policymaker at the Bank of England (BoE), Jonathan Haskel, believes consumer spending in the UK will remain subdued. Mr Haskel also confirmed that he agrees with the ‘broad direction of travel’ regarding BoE guidance on interest rates.

We are expecting the Dow Jones to open up 53 points at 24,305 and we are calling the S&P 500 up 5 points at 2,722.

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