FTSE edges back during low-volume session

Heading into the close the FTSE is down 20 points, at 6850, and the market has been muted during the US public holiday. 

City of London
Source: Bloomberg

Greek situation continues

Trading volumes were low in London and across continental Europe as the public holiday in the US kept traders on this side of the Atlantic sitting on the fence. Greece is going through the motions again as the nation enters another meeting over its debt, which will most likely turn out to be unproductive.

European finance ministers are meeting today to discuss the Greek situation, but you can’t get blood from a stone and if Yanis Varoufakis isn’t willing to play ball then nothing will be achieved. Mr Varoufakis is holding out as long as he can in the hope that he will have his cake and eat it.

Hammerson shares are a touch lower despite posting double-digit growth in full-year NAV. The real estate investment trust was right to go on a buying spree after the share placing last year as retail properties are in demand.

IG is offering a binary bet on the outcome of the UK general election in May, and it is currently indicating there will be a hung parliament. The binary bet suggests the Conservatives will win 288 seats, the Labour party will take 274 seats and the Scottish Nationalist Party is tipped to do well by taking 38 seats, which could turn out to be the balance of power. 

Gold finds support

Gold has found comfort in the $1230 area, but the precious metal has failed to recover from the non-farm payroll selloff, and the Federal Open Market Committee meeting on Wednesday will provide traders with an idea as to what the Fed is thinking. The possibility of a Greek exit from the eurozone is why the bulls haven’t turned their backs on the metal, but the first sign that the Fed is looking to raise rates will draw the bears into the arena.

Brent oil is on the rise again but a lack of liquidity, because of today’s US holiday, will make for a dull day’s trading. Oil’s recovery is well underway but the uphill battle has a long way to go yet.

GBP/USD below $1.54

Sterling slipped below the $1.54 mark in today’s trading ahead of the UK CPI report tomorrow. Mark Carney has already stated he is willing to cut interest rates if necessary, and the anticipated drop in UK CPI has got traders in the mindset that the UK will follow the eurozone down the route of deflation.

The euro is hanging onto the small gains it has made against the dollar as Greece begins yet another round of crunch talks. When it comes to the euro and Greece, the mantra of the market is no: no news is good news.  

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CFD’s zijn complexe instrumenten en brengen vanwege het hefboomeffect een hoog risico mee van snel oplopende verliezen.