Bar the latest net lending to individuals reading (forecast to rise to £4.8 billion from £4.7 billion) the FTSE 100 will likely struggle to find something as compelling as OPEC’s machinations ahead of tomorrow’s attempt at sealing an output cut deal. Yesterday saw Brent Crude sink towards $46 per barrel on to close around the $48 per barrel mark; this morning the black stuff has already looking a bit nervy, dipping half a percent, helping take 0.8% to 1% off BP and Shell in the process.
The oil stocks weren’t the only ones struggling this Monday. The miners had a rather noticeable wobble after the bell, the biggest losses coming from Anglo American and Antofagasta. And the banking sector still looks a bit peaky, its constituents worried about both Wednesday’s stress test results and Sunday’s potentially Eurozone-shaking constitutional reform referendum in Italy. All of this helped contribute to a poor start for the FTSE, which slipped 30 points to hit a more than one week low.
The Eurozone indices, meanwhile, have seen a continuation of yesterday’s rather chunky losses. The DAX ending up closing out Monday at a near 3 week low, so won’t welcome the 25 point fall it has since the session began. The Italian referendum is the main worry for the region; if the ‘No’ vote wins on Sunday, as it looks likely to do, a few more cracks will begin to appear in the very foundation of the EU, an entity that, in the worst case scenario, may not even exist by the end of next year.