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After the FTSE suffered for the first couple of days of this week, it has staged a remarkable recovery in early Wednesday trading. The banking and technology sectors have led from the front, as their gains have more than made up for the relatively poor performance of the mining sector. This more optimistic outlook has been replicated around Europe, as traders conscious of the potential boost the US reporting season might bring have decided this outweighs their worries over the escalations in Ukraine.
Good news for British engineering firm Rolls Royce, as it has won another contract with the US Navy to support and maintain its T-45 training aircraft in a deal worth $100 million.
Hot on the heels of news that the big four food retailers market share was being eaten into, rumours abound that Tesco is set to announce a new chief marketing director. Tesco still hold the lions share of the market but, with the likes of Aldi seeing 35% growth in the last quarter, it appears that action is required.
Last night sawAlcoa kick off the latest US reporting season, with its after-market posting of first-quarter figures beating expectations. Even more optimistically, the management's accompanying statement highlighted its improved view of conditions for the rest of the year. Corporate attention is now being shifted towards Friday's double US banking hit, as both JPMorgan and Wells Fargo are due to report. Before those Friday figures the latest release of the US Federal Open Market Committee minutes will cross our path, but Charles Plossers' comments from his speech last night may have already given the markets a flavour of what is to come.
Ahead of the open, we expect the Dow Jones to start 30 points lower at 16,286.