The UK benchmark index looks set to open higher this morning, ahead of the US non-farm payrolls report later today. In company news, HSBC Holdings (LON:HSBA) will wrap up the blue-chip banking reporting season.
Index seen higher
CNBC reports that the FTSE 100 is seen opening 26 points higher at 7,529. The blue-chip index is likely to take cues from the US, where shares rose last night on the back of strong earnings. Asian stocks, however, have slipped lower this morning amid investor caution ahead of the US jobs report.
“A further pick-up in the pace of wage gains could be the ‘smoking gun’ for the Fed to express any shift away from ‘roughly balanced’ risks to inflation,” said Mizuho analyst Vishnu Varathan in a note, as quoted by Reuters.
At home, the Footsie shed 40.51 points to end the session 0.54 percent in the red at 7,502.69, with investors digesting the latest batch of company earnings and the outcome of the Federal Reserve’s policy meeting this week.
The US non-farm payrolls will be announced at 13:30 BST, and IG reports that the world’s biggest economy is expected to have added 195,000 new jobs last month, from 103,000 a month earlier, while the unemployment rate is expected to have remained unchanged at 4.1 percent.
On the corporate front, HSBC will post results this morning and Proactive Investors reports that Morgan Stanley expects Europe’s biggest bank to unveil that its total income climbed to $13.9 billion from $12.8 billion a year earlier, while adjusted pre-tax profit is forecast to have surged to $6.1 billion from $5.9 billion. Other blue-chips reporting today include Pearson (LON:PSON), InterContinental Hotels Group (LON:IHG) and International Consolidated Airlines Group (LON:IAG).