Morning Market Pulse - Tariff threats to trump trade talks?


Mike van Dulken & Vlad Totia at Accendo Markets, commented to clients this morning:


Markets Overview:

FTSE 100 called to open -20pts at 7360, retracing from last night’s highs towards mid-Feb rising support at 7325. Bulls need a break above overnight 7372 highs to build on upward momentum. Bears require a breach of May support at 7318. Watch levels: Bullish 7375, Bearish 7315


Calls for a negative open come amidst fresh US-China trade tensions. GBP up slightly while Asian markets were mixed on Tuesday as Donald Trump threatens new tariffs in trade talks. Chinese stocks have managed to rebound from a 5% fall. US markets also moved back on track after a sharp sell-off following the US-China trade-war escalation.


Gold ($1282) is back around its late April levels helped by USD weakness and fresh safe-haven seeking. Oil is also off its recent lows thanks to a currency boost. GBP at $1.31 is reversing some of its overnight pullback, which could provide fresh hindrance to the FSTE.


In corporate news this morning;


Dominos Q1 System Sales +4.3% (+4.5% organic); UK & Ireland +4.8%, International -2% (+1.1% organic); UK +3.1% like-for-like (online +8.5%), Ireland +6.8% (online +16.5%); 11 stores opened year to date, Warrington supply centre now serving 449 stores.


Hiscox Q1 Trading +3.3% for written premiums in constant currency. Retail and Hiscox London Market +7.7% and 5.3%, respectively, while Hiscox Re & ILS -4.6%. “We expect growth for our retail businesses to trend towards the mid-point of our 5-15% target in H2”.


Vodafone signs cable wholesale agreement to allow Germany’s Telefonica Deutschland to offer high-speed broadband in DE, CZ, HU, RO. Requires EC approval.


AstraZeneca’s Calquence Phase III ASCEND trial met primary endpoint in previously-treated patients with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia. First of two Phase III CLL trial results expected in 2019.


Ratings agency Fitch places Standard Chartered's short-term ratings under criteria observation


WPP's BCW hires Johanna Skilling as Exec VP of Strategy and Planning; hires Jeffrey Cutler as Exec VP of Analytics and Performance Media.


Provident Financial clarifies performance targets “not intended to forecast a particular level of profit and, as a consequence, it is not possible to derive a profit figure for any future period”.


Kier Group Finance Director Bev Dew will stand down from the board of directors and leave the company by 30 September 2019, shortly after FY results.


Berry has received unconditional Chinese approval for its takeover of RPC.


G4S says it will press ahead with the separation of its Cash Solutions unit after Canada’s Garda World Security Group confirmed it does not intend to make an offer for the group.


Syncona portfolio company Blue Earth Diagnostics (89% stake) announces results from early clinical experience in academic setting with its radiohybrid PSMA-targeted agent, in high-risk primary and recurrent prostate cancer. Blue Earth expects to launch its own phase I/II trial in 2019.


In focus today:


Firstly, the latest hiccup in US-China trade talks after President Trump threatened fresh tariffs on Chinese Imports on the eve of the Chinese administration arriving in Washington.


Data-wise April UK New Car Sales (9am) could provide an indicator of UK Consumer confidence. Any Brexit impact? Seasonal drop? JOLTS Job Openings (3pm) could add to Friday’s strong Non-Farm Payrolls report if it delivers a consensus rebound. US API Oil stocks (9.30pm) could move prices tonight.


Central Bank speakers today include the Bank of England’s Cunliffe (9am) and Haldane (5.30pm) as well as the Fed’s Kaplan (12pm) and Quarles (4.35pm).



Quarterly results season continues, albeit more sedately, with the likes of  Allergan, Liberty Media, newly IPOd Lyft and TripAdvisor reporting from across the pond.

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