So the fed might taper their asset purchase programme in September, or they might not, but either way most of the committee are in agreement that it has to end some time. Absorbing stuff. Someone somewhere obviously read something into it though, with markets initially plunging lower before recovering last night and rallying in the European session this morning. The reality is that we’re none the wiser for last night’s minutes and as such we’re likely to endure further weeks of tired speculation ahead of Mr Bernanke’s press conference following the September FOMC meeting. At least it’s bank holiday weekend… This morning’s rally in risk assets is largely as a result of better than expected manufacturing data out of China that has given cyclical names a boost and called into question a lot of negativity around Chinese growth forecasts we’ve seen over the past weeks. That said, one swallow doesn’t make a spring so the market will be keeping a close eye on numbers out of Beijing before getting excited enough to forget its QE concerns. On the single stock front Premier Oil are struggling to keep pace with the broader market, offered 5% lower after missing on H1 earnings and admitting that meeting FY guidance will be entirely dependent on the output of their Huntingdon oil field. In more positive news, engineering group IMI are soaring to all-time highs, up over 5% after publishing strong H1 earnings and positive guidance for H2. The stock is up over 35% year to date but still trades on a forward PE of around 16 – not hugely expensive to the sector… On the high street WH Smith are also making fresh highs after reiterating full year guidance as their cost cutting plans continue to deliver improved margins across the business. The fact that cost savings are driving earnings growth means the market is probably right to price the company at a discount to broader market valuations, but even so a forward PE of 11 looks very reasonable with the group apparently on the right track… Jobless Claims data at 13:30 will no doubt be the talking point of the afternoon, with dissenting voices in the Fed said to prefer to see more data before any decision on tapering. With most traders pricing in a September reduction in asset purchases regardless, are we now back to good news is good news? That would be nice… CMC Markets is an execution only service provider. The material (whether or not it states any opinions) is for general information purposes only, and does not take into account your personal circumstances or objectives. Nothing in this material is (or should be considered to be) financial, investment or other advice on which reliance should be placed. No opinion given in the material constitutes a recommendation by CMC Markets or the author that any particular investment, security, transaction or investment strategy is suitable for any specific person.