Britain’s blue-chip index looks set to open in positive territory this morning, recouping some of yesterday’s losses, with investors awaiting the outcome of the US Federal Reserve’s two-day policy meeting. The earnings season will continue with a string of corporate releases, including a first-quarter update from Barclays (LON:BARC).
CNBC reports that the FTSE 100 is seen opening 14 points higher at 7,045. US stocks were mixed yesterday, ahead of the Fed meeting conclusion. Shares in Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) plunged more than 18 percent after the microblogging service’s revenue and guidance disappointed analysts. In Asia, stocks declined in early trading, taking cues from the US and with investors digesting corporate earnings.
“The Fed meeting has caused markets to be nervous even though there’s no press conference,” Qunicy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial, told CNBC. “There is a worry that there is a signal that they will raise rates this year.”
The FTSE 100 lost 73.45 points to close 1.03 percent lower at 7,030.53, dragged lower by disappointing corporate updates, lacklustre UK growth numbers and uncertainty ahead of next month’s general election.
“There’s a bit of bad news,” said Andy Ash, head of sales at ADM Investor Services International, as quoted by Reuters. “It’s just a bit of froth (being taken) off the market.”
Today’s macroeconomic calendar includes Germany’s preliminary consumer price index for April, due out at 13:00 BST, followed by a preliminary reading of the US’ first-quarter gross domestic product at 13:30 BST. IG reports that growth in the world’s largest economy is expected to have slowed to 1.1 percent, down from 2.2 percent in the previous quarter. The Fed statement is due out at 19:00 BST, after the London market closes.
On the corporate front, Barclays is scheduled to update investors on its first-quarter performance. Other blue-chip companies expected to report today include London Stock Exchange (LON:LSE), Antofagsta (LON:ANTO), The Weir Group (LON:WEIR), Next (LON:NXT), Standard Life (LON:SL) and British American Tobacco (LON:BATS).