US equity markets rebounded from Tuesday’s worst session since November to close mostly higher overnight. Both the S&P500 and Nasdaq indices closed higher on account of strength in the Tech sector, helping to offset Telecoms weakness, although gains for Apple on the Dow Jones could not offset the significant losses of sports brand Nike as the Dow closed marginally lower.
The markets got off to an understandably quiet start this Thursday following yesterday’s events in Westminster, the European indices gently slipping into the red after the bell.
Spreadex Analyst, Connor Campbell noted – “Dipping around 15 points the FTSE is still holding above 7300, if only just, while the DAX and CAC opened the session down 0.1% and 0.3% respectively. The pound was similarly subdued this morning, sitting flat against the dollar and up 0.1% against the euro; that keeps sterling at its month highs against the former, the currency currently tickling the 1.25 mark.”
In focus today, after the recent market wobble on Trumpflation trade concerns, will be the US Lower House vote on repealing and replacing Obamacare. This is a major hurdle for the administration before being able to implement the stimulus policies that markets have priced in since the election.
Accendo Markets Analyst, Mike Van Dulken commented – “Without this, Trump can’t implement the more exciting pro-growth stimulus policies markets have priced in since his election. Doubts about a favourable voting outcome are the reason for the recent market wobble.”
Data-wise, UK Retail Sales for February will be released later. Spreadex Analyst, Connor Campbell suggested – “The pound could see a more dramatic movement later in the day, once the UK retail sales reading is released. Analysts are expecting the figure to have bounced back from the previous month’s disappointing -0.3%, the forecasts for February standing at 0.4%. This may help reassure sterling that, despite ever-increasing prices, consumers aren’t holding the purse strings too tightly just yet.”
Later in the afternoon, investors will be looking towards Janet Yellen to ease their concerns following Neel Kashkari’s comments about the growth prospects of the US domestic economy.
ADS Securities Analyst, Konstantinos Anthis commented – “The Dollar has taken a “backseat” ever since the Fed rate hike and Dollar bulls are eager for a reason to re-establish their long positions now that the US currency has seen a strong correction against all of its peers.”