Tuesday, 2nd October: Today markets opened lower as the momentary relief from the NAFTA revamp wore off during the Asian trading session this morning, investors instead choosing to not neglect the other trade worries currently ongoing across world markets. The FTSE dropped around a quarter of a percent at the off and barely moved from this mark to eventually close 0.28% lower. Royal Mail Group shares continued to slide (-8.38%) after yesterday afternoon’s profit warning and finished bottom of the index for the second day in a row. The building-materials supplier Ferguson also suffered a poor day, with shares down near 7% during the session after they echoed a cautious tone in their full year results. Miners outperformed as the oil price remained near 4-year highs above $85 p/bbl.
In the UK today, house price data showed that during September on average house prices climbed 0.3%, and on an annual basis by 2%. The majority of house-builders on the day lost ground including Taylor Wimpey and Berkeley Group whom both saw shares drop 1.6%.
Mike Ashley has made one of his first significant changes at House of Fraser, sacking senior management and directors. This is a bold and, in some eyes, drastic step. It is unclear who will replace the former CEO of House of Fraser at this time. Obviously when he heard ‘sack the board’ at the weekend’s football he got the wrong end of the stick.
As we write American shares again refuse to give up on the bull run and are at record highs. The dollar has also made more ground on the pound as sterling sits 0.45% lower against the currency, at $1.298. Staying in America it was reported today that Amazon has raised their minimum wage for employees in the US to $15 p/hour. Rates in the UK will also climb to £10.50 within London and £9.50 outside of London. Given their founder is currently the richest guy in the world it is hard to see why many employees have complained about work conditions.