Monday, 27th January: In very relatable fashion, the FTSE 100 really struggled today. Monday’s are tough. January Monday’s are tougher. And as we accept January is seemingly never going to end, with pay day as far away as Brexit deal, today has been extra tough. So whether today’s sell-off was January blues (unlikely) or due to growing concerns about the Coronavirus (definitely), the index eventually closed 2.3% lower, a considerable one-day drop. Global bourses were all affected, with Wall Street currently doing the same. Firms with exposure to China have been hit particularly hard, Airlines and Luxury Goods retailers for example. Oil prices have also took a hit with traders looking at the impact of Chinese economic growth slowing down in an attempt to contain the outbreak. Unsurprisingly traditional safe havens were amongst the few assets moving higher today, like the Japanese yen, gold and silver.
One of the main stories in London today, separate from general Chinese virus fears, was the lender Amigo putting itself up for sale. Shares have dived 28.5% and have hardly enjoyed much success since their flotation in 2018. Amigo holdings will conduct a strategic review which could result in the sale of some or all of its business. Goes to show the quality of your friends outweighs numbers.
Recruitment firm SThree issued an upbeat trading update today, with profit and revenue both climbing in FY 2019 on strong recruitment markets. They cited solid growth across numerous regions and stand upbeat on the future, which is a rarity these days. Shares managed to climb 2.2%.