FTSE 100 Live: UK GDP rallied before Omicron setback, Currys update

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Today’s GDP figures show that the UK economy had gained momentum before the arrival of O’Micron.

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The 0.9% growth in November was much better than the expected 0.4% and meant GDP exceeded its pre-pandemic levels for the first time.

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The Office for National Statistics figures came as more retailers revealed how they fared during the Omicron-hit festive season. Curry, who warned on profits in December, described the technology market as challenging but increased market share.

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Fall in Nasdaq puts pressure on London market

A late slide for the tech-focused Nasdaq means European markets are projected to open lower, undoing some progress during an otherwise good week for investors.

The FTSE 100 index, which is at its highest level since January 2020, is expected to fall 38 points to 7525.

The Nasdaq dropped 2.5% last night and recorded its lowest daily close since October as investors turned from high-growth stocks to price and cyclical plays.

The performance on Wall Street is a continuation of the volatility seen so far in 2022 as investors weigh the outlook for higher interest rates in the United States.

Futures trading is later pointing to a flat start for US markets, but much will depend on the content of the economic release including retail sales and the performance of several banks at the start of the sector’s reporting season.

Markets in Asia were also under pressure after trade data from China showed the continued impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on activity.

Imports grew 19.5% year-on-year in December, well below market expectations and down on the massive 31.7% growth seen in November.

Despite disappointing data on Chinese demand, Brent crude prices remained close to $85 a barrel, having risen in the previous sessions.

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