market relief

The FTSE 100 is still on a bullish run as the index eked out another record-high this morning, although it only fractionally higher. 

The mining sector is a mixed bag even though China revealed some disappointing trade figures. Imports grew by 4.5%, which was a well below the consensus of 13%, and a big drop-off from the 17.7% growth in November. Vedanta Resources and Rio Tinto are in the red, while Glencore and Antofagasta are higher – all things considered the sector is holding up well given weak Chinese import numbers.

GKN shares soared to an all-time high this morning after the company stated it rejected a takeover approach from Melrose. The board of GKN believed the takeover offer ‘undervalued’ the company, and they confirmed that Anne Stevens, the interim CEO, would become the permeant CEO. The engineering company intends to separate the aerospace and automotive business.   

Bovis Homes stated that completions fell in a ‘controlled and disciplined manner’, but the average selling rose by 7%. The house builder improved the quality of homes it build and customer satisfaction is on the rise. The share price is higher by 2.8% and is eyeing its all-time higher.  

EUR/USD has broken above the 1.2100 mark, for the first time in three years as the hawkish minutes from the European Central Bank (ECB) yesterday still resonates with traders. The optimistic update prompted traders to buy the single currency as they felt the ECB would reign in their loose monetary policy sooner than initially thought.

GBP/USD hit a four month high this morning as the US dollar continues to sell-off. The greenback took a hit yesterday when the in the wake of the ECB minutes, and it hasn’t been able to turn itself around. We are not expecting any major economic data from the UK today, so the move will be dominated by the US dollar.

 At 1.30pm (UK time) the US will announce the inflation figures and economists are expecting a reading of 2.1%, down from 2.2% in December.

We are expecting the Dow Jones to open up 103 points at 25,677, and we are calling the S&P 500 up 6 points at 2773.

JPMorgan, Wells Fargo and BlackRock will announce their quarterly figures today.  

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