FTSE 100 live: London markets to open lower amid weak global cues; All eyes on US inflation, Q1 earnings

The daily London market update: Market moving news from the FTSE 100 and around the world from City A.M.

Apr 8, 2024 - 06:11
FTSE 100 live: London markets to open lower amid weak global cues; All eyes on US inflation, Q1 earnings

Aerial view of Tower Bridge and The City of London

The latest updates on the FTSE 100 and London’s financial markets from City A.M.’s newsroom in the heart of the City of London.

Asian markets reflect cautious optimism amidst uncertainty about potential US interest rate cuts. While Japan’s Nikkei 225 rebounds, Chinese mainland stocks see a slight decline due to ongoing concerns about the property market.  

On Wall Street, main indexes close higher on Friday, driven by better-than-expected job growth and steady wage increases in the US. 

Major Asian currencies weakened against the dollar, with the South Korean won being the most affected. 

Oil prices experience a downturn, dropping over $1 per barrel as tensions in the Middle East ease. With Israel withdrawing troops from southern Gaza and engaging in fresh ceasefire talks, concerns about potential disruptions in oil supply diminish.  

This development contributes to a 1.5 per cent drop in Brent crude futures and a 1.44 per cent decrease in US West Texas Intermediate crude. 

In commodity markets, gold prices experienced a decline of 1.1 per cent to $2,305.09 per ounce after reaching a record high the previous week, while bitcoin saw a rise in value of 2.5 per cent to $69,357. 

Shimao, a leading Chinese real estate firm, faces financial turmoil as China Construction Bank files a winding-up petition in Hong Kong’s High Court. The petition stems from an outstanding financial obligation of HK$1,579.5 million, adding to the woes of Chinese property developers. 

Recruiters in the UK observe sluggish salary growth for permanent staff, marking the slowest rate in over three years, Reuters reported. 

On the other hand, spending on temporary workers also declines sharply, signalling a slowdown in the British job market despite reduced economic uncertainty among major companies. 

As the first quarter earnings season kicks off, major financial institutions like JPMorgan, Citi, State Street, Wells Fargo, and BlackRock are set to reveal their financial results this week.  

Investors are also eagerly awaiting the US March inflation data.  

Meanwhile, the European Central Bank (ECB) is expected to keep interest rates unchanged on Thursday, with speculation about future rate adjustments amid decreasing inflation rates in Europe.