The FTSE remained down by 22 points, damaged by a set of dollar-dragged commodity stocks. The index also faced a mildly disappointing retail sales figure across November, coming in at 0.2% against the 1.8% (revised down from 1.9%) seen in October. As for the pound, it continued to lurk at a 2 week low against the dollar after giving up half a percent against the US currency morning, though it did edge ever closer to 1.20 against the euro with a 0.2% rise. Still to come, obviously, is the Bank of England’s own interest rate decision; while any real change is unlikely, there could be some market movement if Carney and co. give any hints as to what they might do in what is set to be an inflationary 2017.
Over in the Eurozone the DAX and CAC were far perkier than their UK peer, jumping 0.4% and 0.6% respectively. Part of that will be due to the losses incurred by the euro against both the dollar and the pound; adding to that was a better than forecast set of flash manufacturing PMIs from across the region, something admittedly tempered by an unexpected dip in the services reading.
With the dollar showing no signs of slowing down this Thursday, post rate-hike the Dow Jones would traditionally be preparing for a bit of a wobble. However, this is the new and improved Trump-Dow, with the index looking to rise 70 points after the bell to once again edge near 19900. In terms of this afternoon’s data, it will be interesting to see whether the expected dip in inflation, from 0.4% to 0.2% month-on-month, can temper the dollar’s growth. There is also the Philly Fed and Empire State manufacturing indices, the usual jobless claims number and the latest current account reading.