FTSE 100 on the rise for third straight day
FTSE 100 futures continue to rally even as the country’s coronavirus death toll soars past 400.
UK benchmark FTSE 100 index rose 1.9% in pre-market trading hours on Wednesday 25 March, based on IG trading data.
IG's pre-market FTSE 100 price estimates show the index trading at a price of 5,444.7 as at 06:30 GMT.
FTSE 100 index closed 9% higher on Tuesday
On Tuesday 24 March, the FTSE 100 index closed 9% higher – the biggest one-day jump since 2008’s Global Financial Crisis. The index has rallied nearly 12% since Monday.
IG UK senior market analyst Joshua Mahony previously wrote that ‘whether we do see more short-term upside or not, a bearish outlook remains in play unless we see a break through 5428 resistance’.
Other stock benchmarks also saw large increases to finish the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 11.4% - reportedly its biggest one-day gain since 1933, while Japan's Nikkei 225 index soared 7%, its largest daily rise in four years according to BBC News.
Despite the positive market developments, the UK’s coronavirus death toll continues to rise rapidly, as it added another 84 deaths on Tuesday to bring the total number to 422.
UK government’s strict movement guidelines for all residents
The Footsie had started this week’s proceedings at a market-assessed derivative price estimate of 4,857.2 on Monday 23 March – nearly 170 points below last week’s closing mark of 5,023.4. This was the benchmark’s worst level since June 2010.
On Monday, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced in a televised national address a new set of guidelines regarding the movement of residents.
Under the new government guidance, people should only leave their homes to travel to and from work when it is ‘absolutely necessary’; exercise once a day in the form of a run, walk or cycle by themselves or with household members; make grocery runs for only necessities, and as infrequently as possible; or to seek medical help.
‘If you do not follow the rules, the police will have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings,’ the Prime Minister stated, adding that the restrictions would be in place for at least three weeks and would be kept under constant review.
All social events, including weddings, baptisms and other ceremonies will also be prohibited from taking place. Only funerals will be allowed.
Public spaces such as pubs, cinemas, libraries, community centres, non-essential retailers and shops, playgrounds, leisure facilities, outdoor gyms and places of worship have been ordered to close.
Parks will remain open for exercise but people are not allowed to congregate in groups.
A full border lockdown could be next
Mr Johnson had also a day earlier reiterated the possibility of a full border lockdown regarding the coronavirus pandemic.
‘We need to think about the kinds of measures that we’ve seen elsewhere, other countries that have been forced to bring in restrictions on people’s movements altogether,’ he said.
Mr Johnson had stated that residents are to stop congregating in public and take the government’s guidelines of social distancing seriously, or face the consequence of new, tougher law enforcement measures being introduced.
‘We will think about this very actively in the next 24 hours. If people can’t make use of parks and playgrounds responsibly, in a way that observes the 2-metre rule, then of course we’re going to have to look at further measures,’ he stated.
Earlier, the Hammersmith and Fulham council said they will close local parks from Sunday night, while the Royal Parks charity – which operates Hyde, Regent's and St James' Parks, are closing kiosks and cafes located on the grounds of seven of its parks.
Royal Parks also warned that ‘if people do not follow social distancing guidelines’, it will have to ‘consider closing the parks’.
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