Dow lags behind counterparts ahead of Apple's earnings

Heading into the close the FTSE 100 is down 37 points, at 6272, as concerns over global growth grow.

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Source: Bloomberg

Oil and gas stocks in the red

Oil and gas stocks are bearing the brunt of the selloff; crude oil is continuing to collapse in value, mining companies are also in the red and traders are preparing themselves for underwhelming growth figures from China. 

IG is offering a binary bet on the 2015 general election, and the rise of UKIP has lead traders to believe there will be another hung parliament. Our binary is indicating a 50% chance of no overall majority.

British banks are on edge; this could be the calm before the next eurozone debt crisis storm.

IBM's earnings weigh on Dow

In the US the Dow Jones is down 41 points at 16,339. IBM posted its poor number ahead of schedule, and the tech company announced its intention to dump the loss-making chip manufacturing division which will cost it $1.5 billion. The move in IBM wiped roughly 80 points off the Dow Jones, which could see the index struggle to catch up with the S&P 500 and NASDAQ, both of which are in positive territory.

Apple is biting at the $100 mark ahead of its results which are expected after the closing bell. The iPhone maker has struggled to stay above the $100 level whenever it has exceeded this area.

Gold eyes $1250

Copper is feeling the pinch ahead of the Chinese GDP figures tonight. Traders are clamouring to get out of the red metal as the second largest economy in the world is on the verge of admitting it isn’t going to meet its full-year growth target.

Gold is benefitting from what little safe-haven status it still has. The metal is eyeing the $1250 mark and given the lack of confidence in the equity market it’s likely to hit it soon.

The slowdown in China could not come at a worse time for the oil market, as overproduction from oil-rich nations and declining global demand continues to crush the price of crude oil.

US dollar cools off

The US dollar cooled off today as traders are counting down to the end of QE. Federal Reserve member Jerome Powell avoided commenting on the interest rates of the stimulus package which added to the US dollar decline.  

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