Monday, 5 September: Early UK trade was in the green prompted by a positive trading session in Asia, before FTSE indices retreated on the back of stronger than expected UK Services PMI data. At mid morning we also saw a spike in Brent Crude of c. $2/bbl before the complex retraced to trade in the $47-$47.50/bbl bound. This was prompted by OPEC discussions led by Russia and Saudi Arabia regarding an output freeze, though as ever progress with talks lapsed negating any momentum swing to higher prices. Despite this, oil majors were still set to close the day higher.
Stronger than expected UK services PMI data prompted UK equity indices lower whilst lending strength to an emergent Sterling, pushing the currency to a seven week high against the greenback and a one month high against the euro. The services PMI rebounded to 52.9 in August, well ahead of the 50.9 forecast and the July figure of 47.4. The rebound of 5.5 points is the largest on record(20 years), following the largest ever fall in July. This built on momentum generated from improving UK PMI construction data and helped the pound take advantage of Friday’s weaker than expected US jobs report which prompted a weaker dollar trade.
Zoopla(+8.14%) led the way for the FTSE 250 after Barclays re-rated the stock from Equal Weight to Overweight. The bank claimed it was confident on the outlook of the property website following the acquisition of uSwitch and Property Software Group, as trading for uSwitch was seen to be robust along with a number of potential sources of upside.
At the close European indices were mixed with the FTSE 100 -0.22%, the CAC 40 -1.09%, and the DAX 30 -0.11%.