Unfortunately, the majority of headlines this week have been made up by tragic natural disasters. Following Hurricane Harvey that battered Texas was Hurricane Irma which has ripped through the Caribbean and sadly hasn’t ran out of steam yet, some already estimating over 20,000,000 people could be affected. Then, Friday morning saw news break of a huge earthquake in Mexico, the largest the country has suffered in over a century. The 8.1 magnitude quake struck in the Pacific off the coast of Mexico, prompting a tsunami. In events such as these, the huge socio-economic impact can be hard to quantify and truly measure. But of course governments shift priorities, output is severely hampered, natural resources can be affected and then afterwards some sectors will again be hit harder, potentially insurers, financials, resource stocks and so on.
Friday didn’t present much in the way of market related news. Markets opened down as investors small risk appetite burned out for the weekend, especially given the extreme weather across the Caribbean and Mexico and fears that North Korea’s Foundation day holiday would give Kim a great excuse to bring a few missile tests and nuclear warheads to the party. All in all, it’s a no for risk, but let’s reconvene on Monday and talk.
UK manufacturing figures for July were released today, it showed that manufacturing grew at its fastest pace this year in July, rising by 0.5% after a car production rebound helped. Throughout the day the FTSE remained lower and closed 0.26% lower, almost where it began, capping a disappointing week for the main index. The pound did however end the week strongly and as we speak sits 0.78% higher versus the dollar at $1.32 and 0.68% higher versus the euro at €1.09. Banks were amongst some of the best performers on the day, all happy following the ECB meet yesterday.
Let’s all sit back, relax and hope the only thing getting set alight on Saturday in Korea is burgers, which according to Kim he invested. So yeh digest that.