- Markets still digesting non-farm payrolls
- Chinese export growth picks up
- Japan Q3 GDP revised lower
techMARK 2,678.36 +0.29%
FTSE 100 6,553.51 +0.02%
FTSE 250 15,359.05 +0.27%
Markets opened more or less flat on Monday morning as investors continued to digest last week's strong US data, as well as mixed economic figures from Asia overnight.
Global indices gained strongly on Friday after the US jobs report on hopes that the economic recovery my be solid enough to warrant a reduction in stimulus by the Federal Reserve. The Fed's next policy meeting is on December 17-18th.
US non-farm payrolls increased by 203,000 in November, compared with a revised 200,000 gain the month before and well ahead of the consensus forecast for 185,000. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate fell to 7% from 7.3%, below the 7.2% rate estimated by analysts.
"In our view, this [positive] market reaction indicates that either the market still feels confident that these numbers are not strong enough to trigger an action from the Fed this month or market is already priced in for the taper and ready to fully buy-in to 'tapering is not tightening'," said Barclays analyst Cagdas Aksu.
Nevertheless, he said that Barclays economists are "still sticks with their call of first tapering in March 2014".
Asian markets performed well overnight after the news that export growth in China accelerated strongly in November. The year-on-year increase in exports accelerated to 12.7% last month, from 5.6% in October and well ahead of the 7% growth expected by analysts.
As import growth slowed down to 5.3% from 7.6%, the country's trade surplus widened to a five-year high of $33.8bn, from $31.1bn previously and ahead of forecasts.
Figures also showed that Chinese consumer price inflation slowed to 3% in November, from 3.2% the month before and under the 3.1% rate forecast.
However, data from Japan showed that estimates for third-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth had been revised down sharply to an annualised rate of 1.1%.
This compares with the initial estimate of 1.9% in November and well below the 3.6% growth registered in the second quarter. The revision was mainly due to lower estimates of investment and higher inventories by companies.
Tullow drops after abandoning well
Oil group Tullow was among the worst performers this morning after saying it has plugged and abandoned its Tultule-1 wildcat well onshore Ethiopia as it failed to encounter oil.
Mining stocks were under the weather with Fresnillo, Randgold, Antofagasta, Rio Tinto, Anglo American and Glencore Xstrata all registering losses early on.
Meanwhile, financials were in demand with Aviva, Aberdeen, RBS, Standard Life and HSBC heading higher in the opening hour. HSBC was making headlines this morning on rumours that it is thinking about a flotation of its UK arm.
Even Lloyds was higher despite a downgrade by Beaufort Securities to 'hold'. The bank announced this morning that has sold a portfolio of UK corporate real estate loans as part of its continued non-core asset reduction programme.
Kentz gained strongly after offering $435m for the oilfield solutions business of US-based Valerus as it looks to expand its offering and increase its footprint in the Americas regions.
WPP rose after saying that it has acquired semantic advertising solutions group Crystal Semantics, strengthening its digital media and mobile advertising business.
FTSE 100 - Risers
Aviva (AV.) 430.20p +2.58%
Aberdeen Asset Management (ADN) 473.10p +1.28%
International Consolidated Airlines Group SA (CDI) (IAG) 361.60p +1.12%
Shire Plc (SHP) 2,733.00p +0.89%
Hargreaves Lansdown (HL.) 1,219.00p +0.83%
Prudential (PRU) 1,265.00p +0.72%
Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBS) 337.90p +0.72%
Standard Life (SL.) 342.80p +0.71%
WPP (WPP) 1,323.00p +0.68%
easyJet (EZJ) 1,436.00p +0.63%
FTSE 100 - Fallers
Tullow Oil (TLW) 881.50p -2.00%
Fresnillo (FRES) 742.00p -1.98%
Petrofac Ltd. (PFC) 1,175.00p -1.59%
Randgold Resources Ltd. (RRS) 3,984.00p -1.36%
Antofagasta (ANTO) 760.50p -1.11%
Rio Tinto (RIO) 3,271.00p -1.03%
Anglo American (AAL) 1,314.00p -0.83%
Tate & Lyle (TATE) 777.50p -0.64%
Aggreko (AGK) 1,613.00p -0.62%
Vedanta Resources (VED) 839.50p -0.59%
FTSE 250 - Risers
Kentz Corporation Ltd. (KENZ) 641.00p +10.14%
Inmarsat (ISAT) 717.50p +3.91%
Domino Printing Sciences (DNO) 716.50p +3.09%
Synthomer (SYNT) 238.00p +3.03%
Savills (SVS) 634.00p +3.01%
Kenmare Resources (KMR) 19.63p +2.67%
Xaar (XAR) 1,092.00p +2.54%
Amlin (AML) 432.60p +1.96%
Rank Group (RNK) 136.60p +1.94%
Oxford Instruments (OXIG) 1,526.00p +1.73%
FTSE 250 - Fallers
Carpetright (CPR) 511.00p -2.11%
Polymetal International (POLY) 489.10p -1.83%
African Barrick Gold (ABG) 152.70p -1.80%
Barr (A.G.) (BAG) 553.50p -1.51%
Berkeley Group Holdings (The) (BKG) 2,504.00p -1.30%
Hochschild Mining (HOC) 123.10p -1.28%
Computacenter (CCC) 641.50p -1.23%
Premier Oil (PMO) 297.30p -1.16%
EnQuest (ENQ) 137.20p -1.08%
Barratt Developments (BDEV) 334.30p -1.07%