The FTSE continued to fall this Thursday morning with a 30 point drop in early trading. And it’s all down to the Pound which has continued its push north as investors cheer progress in the UK’s Brexit negotiations.

FxPro analyst, Edward Anderson commented “GBP gained against its peers on news that London and Brussels have agreed that the UK will pay between €45 and €55bn ($53-63bn) to leave the European Union according to media reports.”

However, as a note of caution to investors, he suggested “Whilst this is a major “step-forward” it still leaves 2 critical issues that need to be agreed upon: expatriate citizens’ rights after Brexit and the Irish border.”

Meanwhile, the Dollar has been showing further positive signs overnight. ADS Securities analyst, Konstantinos Anthis suggested “The US currency was able to score gains versus the Japanese yen, gold and the commodity currencies but failed to do the same against the European majors.”

“The progress in the [US] tax reform bill has been received in a positive manner by market participants but until the bill is actually passed into law there is a feeling of uncertainty which is stopping a stronger dollar rally.”

Bitcoin, which this week managed to push through the $10,000 level has received a further boost from the Nasdaq. CMC Markets analyst, Michael Hewson explains, “Bitcoin, which had until the summer been little more than a passing distraction for most investors appears to be starting to gain acceptance as some form of safe haven, store of value, or even risky punt, whatever you want to call it, but however you describe it the interest in it has seen the price go parabolic in the last few days.”

“Exchanges appear to be queuing up to offer bitcoin futures with Nasdaq yesterday saying it plans to follow the CME and offer bitcoin futures in the first half of 2018.”

In equities, the US markets saw significant divergence overnight. Accendo Markets analyst, Mike van Dulken noted “the Dow Jones climbed to a fresh record closing high thanks to UnitedHealth and JP Morgan gains, while the Tech-focused Nasdaq dropped well over 1% as the sector saw significant declines across the board.”

“Large cap stocks such as Netflix (-5.5%), Facebook (-4%) and Google (Alphabet; -4%) suffered as US Q3 GDP was revised higher, seeing investors shy away from the sector that has already seen an impressive return this year in favour of other risk assets.”

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30th November 2017
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