MARKET REPORT: Global markets tumble over health of economy


Global markets tumbled amid mounting fears over the health of the world economy. 

As the mini-Budget sent ripples through the City, the FTSE 100 fell 1.97 per cent, or 140.92 points, to 7018.60 and the FTSE 250 was down 1.96 per cent, or 359 points, to 17,972.69. The main benchmark in Germany fell 1.97 per cent while France’s CAC was down by 2.28 per cent. 

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 and tech-heavy Nasdaq all tumbled. Markets continue to be rattled by the prospect of aggressive interest rate rises in the US as central banks race to curb red-hot inflation. 

On the slide: As the mini-Budget sent ripples through the City, the FTSE 100 fell 1.97 per cent, or 140.92 points, to 7018.60

In London, as the price of Brent crude oil hovered above $86 a barrel, Shell dipped 5.3 per cent, or 124p, to 2214.5p while BP was down 5.5 per cent, or 25.15p, to 433.1p, and Harbour Energy sank 6.1 per cent, or 29.5p, to 452.6p. 

Despite this, City broker Jefferies issued positive ratings. Shell’s target price was hiked to 3300p from 2700p while BP’s was raised by 70p, to 490p. Mining stocks took a hit as metal prices reversed, sending Fresnillo down 5.6 per cent, or 41.2p, to 690.2p and Antofagasta by 5.9 per cent, or 65.5p, to 1042.5p. 

There was more good news for AstraZeneca only a day after a drug to treat ovarian cancer was approved by Chinese regulators.

The pharmaceutical giant said ultomiris has been approved in Europe to treat adults who have myasthenia gravis, a rare disorder that prevents muscles from functioning properly. Despite this it fell 1.9 per cent, or 82p, to 10,016p. 

Some property developers took a hit following a broker downgrade and the prospect of higher interest rates. Analysts at Jefferies trimmed Landsec’s target price to 641p from 672p, sending it down 5.9 per cent, or 33.8p, to 535.8p. 

Facing the same fate was British Land as its target price was cut to 420p from 459p. It slumped 4.4 per cent, or 16.8p, to 361.9p. 

Prudential fared better after JP Morgan raised the insurer’s target price to 1450p from 1380p, saying incoming boss Anil Wadhwani could provide a chance to broaden its financial and strategic aims. It rose 0.7 per cent, or 6.4p, to 927.8p. 

Burberry also announced some boardroom changes after its chief operating and financial officer said she would step down next April. Julie Brown, who has been at the luxury fashion brand for six years, is moving outside the industry. It slid 4.6 per cent, or 79p, to 1639p. 

Smiths Group beat market expectations to report a 3.8 per cent rise in revenue to £2.56billion for the year to the end of July, and climbed 1.3 per cent, or 19.5p, to 1490p. 

Moonpig was among the casualties of broker downgrades after Citigroup and Jefferies cut the online greetings card company’s target price, sending it plunging 8.1 per cent, or 14.8p, to 168.9p. 

Likewise, landlord Tritax Big Box sank 5.8 per cent, or 8.6p, to 139.4p after Barclays cut the target price to 155p from 200p. 

Royal Mail took a further hit on the back of its dispute with unions. Liberum analyst Gerald Khoo issued a ‘sell’ rating on the stock, saying its decision to propose negotiations be taken to Acas, the dispute resolution service, is likely to infuriate the unions. It fell 4 per cent, or 8.15p, to 196.45p. 

The outgoing boss of the magazine publisher behind Country Life and Four Four Two scooped up almost £20,000 of shares only days after saying she would retire within the next 18 months. Zillah Byng-Thorne bought 1,276 shares in Future for 1435p each, as it dropped 1.2 per cent, or 16p, to 1365p. 

Longboat Energy rose 1.2 per cent, or 0.5p, to 43p after the North Sea oil group said it may have made a significant gas discovery in Norway. Analysts at Stifel said this could turn out to be Longboat’s most impressive result to date.

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