- Losses expected on FTSE 100 in early trade
- BoE to release minutes of its last meeting
- Meggitt wins braking systems contract
City sources predict the FTSE 100 will open around 26 points lower than yesterday's close of 6,696 - its highest closing level since May 28th - following a worse-than-expected US jobs report.
Although the report spurred hopes of a near-term continuation of quantitative easing (QE) by the Federal Reserve, stocks are expected to pause for breath after strong gains over the past nine sessions.
Non-farm payrolls increased by just 148,000 in September, according to the US data, which was delayed by over two weeks due to the prolonged government shutdown. The consensus forecast was for a much bigger increase of 180,000.
While the unemployment rate fell from 7.3% to 7.2%, the data reinforced speculation that the Fed will refrain from tapering stimulus until next year, given that that the survey was taken before the fiscal stand-off in Washington which is said to have weighed heavily on economic growth.
Turning to today's events, the Bank of England (BoE) will release minutes of its last meeting on Wednesday, shedding further light on the central bank's decision to keep its monetary policy unchanged.
The BoE's Monetary Policy Committee earlier this month stuck to its pledge to keep interest rates at a record low of 0.5% until the unemployment rate falls to 7% - which is not expected for another three years.
The central bank also decided to leave its total asset purchases unchanged at £375bn.
The minutes will reveal which ministers voted in favour of the decision and will provide more details into the reason behind the BoE's move.
Also on the cards today will be the Loans for House Purchases report from the British Bankers' Association. Loans are expected to rise to 39,500 in September from 38,228 the prior month.
In company news, Meggitt, the FTSE 100 aerospace, defence and energy group, announced Wednesday that its Aircraft Braking Systems has been selected by Dassault on its all-new Falcon 5X business jet. Meggitt will supply the jet with its braking system and integrated control and monitoring unit for landing gear extension and retraction, nose wheel steering and aircraft hydraulic systems.
British sports goods retailer Sports Direct said good trading this year has continued despite the lack of another major event such as last year's Olympics, putting it on track to hit annual profit targets.
Home Retail Group's pre-tax profit in the first half rose 53% to £27.4m, driven by sales growth in its Argos and Homebase subsidiaries. In the six months to August 31st, sales climbed 3% to £2.5bn including a 2.3% increase in like-for-like sales at catalogue merchant Argos and a 5.9% jump at home improvement store Homebase.