Sunday 27th May 2018
Mike van Dulken and Artjom Hatsaturjants at Accendo Markets, commented to clients this morning: FTSE 100 Index called to open +45pts at 7760, rebounding from yesterday’s 7710 low to challenge the ceiling of 2-day falling channel from Monday’s record peak. Bulls need a break above 7780 to inspire confidence that a 2.5% correction sufficed to consolidate the 15% rally from late March. Bears require a break below 7750 to hint at a revisit of yesterday. Calls for a positive open come in spite of minor losses in Asia, where investors were skittish after President Trump cancelled the US-NK summit, blaming “open hostility”. However, North Korea has already offered an olive branch, saying “still open” to negotiations, helping Asian markets and Wall St pare losses. FTSE support derives from GBP weakness, reversing yesterday’s retail sales inspired jump, after Brexit talks broke down in acrimony in Brussels. UK ultimatums on unrestricted access to the Galileo satellite project were criticised as “fantasy”, the UK wanting membership benefits without corresponding responsibilities. BoE Governor Carney also warned last night that a disorderly Brexit might require another interest rate cut to support the economy. Despite geopolitical concerns, gold is off its “summit-cancellation” highs, pushed lower by fresh USD strength (world’s reserve currency and thus a safe haven of sorts), adding to reciprocal GBP weakness to help the FTSE. Energy may remain under pressure after oil traded lower on both a stronger USD and hints from OPEC and Russia about winding down voluntary production cuts to offset supply disruptions (Venezuela/Iran) --

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  • Friday, 25 May 2018 The three-way stretch that is now Brexit, but for how long?
    You can only play chicken for so long: and in the current three-day round of Brexit talks, both sides look to be exhausted and tetchy at the effort of maintaining their poker faces. In the UK, the premier, Theresa May, is hemmed in by Brexiteers wanting a clean break and the instincts of her Chancellor and business at large that a complete break is the worst of all world. The European Commission is hemmed in by its decision that the UK must pay a penalty for leaving and that any future deal must show this fact and the realisation again that deadlock leading to a complete break is the worst of all worlds. There’s some commonality there. Questions now include: can both sides get to a mutually beneficial deal? And: can the UK finesse the increasingly fragile balance of power between key EU states and the EC (Italy comes to mind) to leverage a great deal for the UK? What are the stakes? Read more...
  • Friday, 25 May 2018 Ostrum and Natixis CIB set up real estate private debt investment vehicle
    Ostrum Asset Management, an affiliate of Natixis Investment Managers, and Natixis’ Corporate & Investment Banking arm are setting up a co-investment offering on real asset private debt in three strategic sectors for the group – real estate, infrastructure and aviation. Read more...
  • Thursday, 24 May 2018 ITRS Group Partners with MapR for New Gateway Hub in Geneos
    Analytics maven ITRS Group is partnering with MapR, whose software will be integrated with ITRS Geneos, a new gateway hub, that helps financial institutions capture data and alerts, including incident investigation. Read more...
  • Thursday, 24 May 2018 US stokes Asia-Pac protectionism fears says Atradius
    Some 45% of the exporters surveyed by Atradius in the region expect their turnover to decline 10% to 20% due to uncertainty over and changes in trade agreements according to the latest Atradius Payment Practices Barometer for the Asia-Pacific. Read more...
  • Thursday, 24 May 2018 Is politics poisoning the Turkish lira?
    There is an audible silence from researchers in Turkey’s banks and brokerages following a volatile period for the lira. Yesterday the Turkish central bank hiked rates by 300 basis points (bps) to 16.5% to help stem a 5% slide in the lira, ahead of monetary policy committee meeting schedules for June 5th. The central bank however left one-week repo rate (8%) overnight lending (9.25%) and overnight borrowing rates (7.25%) unchanged. Today the lira took another battering, with the USD/TRY falling from 4.557 to 4.851 at the time of writing. What now in advance of elections in late June? Read more...
  • Thursday, 24 May 2018 Why the flattening of the yield curve might not signal the end of the economic cycle
    Flattening of the yield curve is a natural by-product of a rate hiking cycle and is common in the later stages of the business cycle. The question is now, whether it is the right time, or too early to call time on current economic expansion cycle. John Bilton, head of global multi-asset strategy at JP Morgan Asset Management looks at the evidence. Read more...
  • Wednesday, 23 May 2018 CaixabankAM asks SimCorp's to upgrade its front to back office ops
    SimCorp says Spain's CaixaBank Asset Management, with €50bn in assets under management, has selected SimCorp Dimension to transform its front to back office operations. Read more...
  • Wednesday, 23 May 2018 Australia & New Zealand trade talks start under new EU regime
    The European Council has accepted new principles underpinning trade negotiations, just as talks have started between the EU and Australia and New Zealand. The new approach results mainly from the European Court of Justice's opinion on the division of competences between the EU and its member states for the conclusion of the EU-Singapore FTA. Read more...
  • Wednesday, 23 May 2018 Has Hong Kong retail property finally bottomed out?
    The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors' (RICS's) latest Hong Kong Property Monitor suggests that in Q1 this year, demand for retail space is flat, compared to Q4 last year, the first time since 2013 that the segment has not been in decline. Read more...
  • Wednesday, 23 May 2018 UK Fintech needs to look beyond payments for an Indian summer
    Nothing like a well-timed meeting between two political powerhouses to showcase the importance of India to Britain post-Brexit. But while last month’s carefully crafted photo op between May and Modi inevitably grabbed the limelight, it is by no means the only blossoming relationship between the two nations. By Fraser Bell, Chief Commercial Officer at BSO. Read more...
  • Wednesday, 23 May 2018 Will Italy’s populist coalition’s fiscal plans pummel Italy’s sovereign rating and the EU?
    Yields on Italian bonds are at three-year highs and the premium to cover possible default in Italian sovereign debt is rising back to levels seen last October. What’s the beef? Well, the incoming coalition has hinted that Italy might seek a debt write-down even as politicians threaten to upend the relationship with Europe and increase government spending and issue short term credit notes. Can the incoming government square this illogical circle? Read more...
  • Wednesday, 23 May 2018 Blockchain-enabled lease contracts to arrive in 2022 suggests BrickVest survey
    Six in ten (61%) real estate investors expect the industry will adopt blockchain technology for transactions, a 9% increase on 2016, according to new research from BrickVest, the commercial real estate investment platform. In contrast, just 18% of investors do not expect to see the future use of blockchain technology in property transactions. Read more...
  • Tuesday, 22 May 2018 How Africa's emerging fintech culture is transforming the continents FX landscape
    Africa’s fragmented markets and lack of legacy foreign exchange trading infrastructure means that the continent has become a melting pot of fintech activity and innovation. The evolution to electronic foreign currency trading in Africa, whilst slow to start, is today gaining tremendous traction writes Tim Hutchinson, head of digital for financial markets at Standard Bank. Read more...
  • Tuesday, 22 May 2018 Tadawul changes to opening and closing price mechanism
    Tadawul, the Saudi Stock Exchange, says previously disclosed enhancements to its opening and closing price mechanism will be implemented effective May 27th. Changes to the methodology for determining opening and closing prices apply to both the Main Market and Nomu - Parallel Market include moving from a Volume Weighted Average Price (VWAP) to an auction method for determining closing prices and enhancing the opening price auction in line with practices adopted by most other major markets. Read more...
  • Tuesday, 22 May 2018 A seminal week for EU-UK talks in Brussels as sterling tanks
    According to John Hardy, head of FX at Saxo Bank, “Sterling has crumbled badly versus the greenback after reaching the 1.4300+ area on the anticipation of rate normalisation from the Bank of England. Ongoing Brexit uncertain and bad data stumbles have pushed the number and pace of BoE rate hikes lower. The pair has crumbled through a key pivot zone around 1.3500 – a major level that provided support during the global financial crisis and was a key resistance zone on the way back up from the post-Brexit cellar.” What next? Read more...

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Key Stories from FTSE Global Markets

Although long standing, in 2016 the country’s privatisation programme was harnessed by the government to encourage foreign investment in minority stakes in a gamut of state-owned firms, include the country’s flagship National Company KazMunaiGas. Since then, the programme has sometimes been mired in questions around governance. Partners, Carter Brod and Aset Shyngyssov of global law firm Morgan Lewis examine the viability of Kazakhstan’s privatisation plans.

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Set against a dynamic business backdrop in its own backyard, the European Energy Exchange (EEX) has adopted a confident and bold strategy to establish its global footprint within the exchange industry. Last year’s move into new commodity focused asset classes marks a new dimension in EEX’s growth and its continued transition from Europe’s leading energy exchange towards a global, multi-commodity exchange group. It has provided EEX and its parent company, Deutsche Börse Group, a growing competitive edge, given that it can also provide the vertical post trade support infrastructure required to back its expansion plans. Why has EEX been so successful in Europe, and how does that translate into its plans for global growth?

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Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Egypt opts for development funds

For the third time this year, the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) has depreciated the Egyptian pound against the dollar in a foreign exchange auction in mid-October, taking the currency's decline for the year to 9.8%. The pound fell 1.3%(10 piasters) to 7.93 per dollar sell side and 7.88 buy side according to a report by the state-owned Middle East News Agency, which announced that the CBE offered $40m at a regular dollar sale to local lenders. Can the country pick its way out of the blues?

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The make-up of shareholders in Turkey’s banking segment has always been a touchstone of wider market change. The country has always been a swing market and the banking system has remained vulnerable, even with an improved capital base, as it has an ultra-high dependency on foreign funding of lending. That vulnerability has resulted in some significant changes in the investment in the country’s banking segment by foreign financial firms who have shown little stickiness in the country when the going gets tougher.

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Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Political uncertainty weighs on Turkey

A survey of 947 respondents in Turkey by Washington think tank PewCentre Research suggests Turks are dissatisfied with the direction of their country. Rising prices, crime and inequality are concerns. Moreover after years of quasi-Islamic rule that has been antipathetic to the military; survey respondents say the military is the only group with a “good influence on the country”. Opinions of the police, national government, religious leaders and the courts are mixed, while views of the media tilt to the negative. More pertinently perhaps, 52% of Turks think their children will be worse off financially in the future. The findings come as voters are scheduled to revisit national government elections on November 1st after the AKP party failed to form a coalition government in June. The upcoming elections will be closely watched, both as a bellwether of wider change in the eastern Mediterranean and as an indicator of the near term prospects for a lynchpin emerging market.

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