Risk-averse traders send Dow lower

Heading into the close the FTSE 100 is up five points at 6684, as the market runs out of steam.

New York Stock Exchange traders
Source: Bloomberg

HSBC finishes on a high

Intertek leads the FTSE 100 despite registering a decline in profits and revenues, as its positive outlook for the second half has been well received by traders. 

Standard Life is drifting lower ahead of its first-half results tomorrow. The Edinburgh-based pensions provider is contemplating changing its headquarters pending the outcome of the Scottish referendum, just over one month away. 

HSBC is set to finish the day on a high note, after the biggest British bank posted a decline in profits as expected. Its commitment to compliance and regulation suggests the finance house has learnt its lesson. 

The German equity benchmark is paying the price for the country’s heavy dependence on Russian energy. As long as Berlin and Moscow are at odds with each other, the DAX will remain in the red. 

Dow heads lower

The Dow Jones is trading at 16,451, down 42 points on the day with the 200-day moving average drawing ever nearer. As the US reporting season comes to an end, and the uncertainty in Ukraine and the Middle East looms over the market, traders are reluctant to get back in the water. 

American International Group is reporting after the close tonight, and the insurer is set to be hit with exceptional claims. The stock has been trading marginally higher on the day. 

Copper dragged higher

Gold slips as traders risk appetite increases. Whether it is in positive or negative territory it is always in sight of the $1300 mark. The precious metal has been rangebound for the past couple of weeks but the Russian situation could change that. 

The rally in Chinese equities dragged copper futures higher as the feel-good factor slipped over to the metal. Expansion in Chinese manufacturing has given traders good reason to go long.

EUR/USD holds onto gains

The euro has held onto the gains it made following the softer-than-expected jobs report from the US last week. The services PMI data for the eurozone, which is due out tomorrow, will test the single currency. 

Sterling is gathering pace versus the US dollar following a tough two weeks, but the Bank of England meeting on Thursday could put the wind back into its sails.

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