FTSE 100 watch: Footsie steady ahead of Fed decision

FTSE 100 watch: Footsie steady ahead of Fed decision
Written by:
Tsveta van Son
March 11, 2020

The FTSE 100 has climbed marginally higher in today’s session, holding steady with investors awaiting the outcome of the latest Federal Reserve policy meeting. In individual Footsie movers, Kingfisher (LON:KGF) is underperforming the market after updating investors on its interim performance this morning.

FTSE 100 steady

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As of 12:41 BST, the Footsie had added 6.83 points to stand 0.09 percent higher at 7,327.23. Market sentiment has been cautiously positive in today’s session, with investors awaiting a rate cut by the Fed later today. The US central bank’s decision, however, is due after the UK market closes.

“The question facing the market is how many more (rate cuts) there are to come,” Markets.com analyst Neil Wilson wrote, as quoted by Reuters. “Are we at the end of the mid-cycle adjustment, or the early stages of a full-blown easing path? Will we get yet another flip-flop?”

“Traders are increasingly less confident in the number of cuts the FOMC [Federal Open Market Committee] will carry out this year,” the analyst added.

Kingfisher down

In individual FTSE 100 movers, Kingfisher is under the cosh as it posted a fall in sales and profits for the six months to July 31, as it continued to suffer from weak performance at its French business. The company further cautioned that its outlook by geography remained mixed, and pointed to continued uncertainty around consumer demand in the UK.

“The shares are down by a third since she took over in December 2014, during which time the FTSE 100 is up by some 10% and the main reason for this is the failure of her five-year OneKingfisher plan to deliver the targeted cost, productivity and profit gains,” Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, commented, as quoted by Proactive Investors, referring to the company’s outgoing chief executive Véronique Laury who is stepping down next week. “At least today’s interims do no worse than live down to the lowered expectations set by March’s profit warning”. Kingfisher’s shares are changing hands 2.38 percent lower at 196.70p.

The FTSE 100 was 0.06 percent up at 7,324.82 points as of 13:04 BST on Wednesday, 18 September 2019.