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As the afternoon moves to a close, the FTSE 100 is 45 points lower, with more sustained losses in the rest of Europe and a weak open in the US that threatens to undo all of yesterday’s good work. It appears the absence of Yanis Varoufakis has not reduced Greece’s ability to annoy its creditors. Turning up in Brussels without fresh proposals and instead promising them tomorrow is perhaps the best way to ensure that any new ideas get a cold reception. If anything sends a message that Alexis Tsipras is not serious about negotiations, then this is it.
The market’s disappointment was almost palpable, much like that of a parent confronting an unruly child, and equity markets rapidly shed the ground that they had gained yesterday. In all seriousness, Greece’s government now appears intent on leaving, and if they carry on in this fashion, the rest of the eurozone will be happy to show them the door.
The dollar remains the undoubted king at present, as safe haven demand, coupled with Federal Reserve policy expectations, drives the buying of the greenback. The move is making itself felt in oil markets once again, where resurgent supply levels have pulled the rug out from underneath the oil price. This is carrying across to USD/CAD, with the Loonie now in full retreat and the pair registering fresh multi-month highs this afternoon.
In London miners are feeling the pinch too, occupying most of the spaces at the bottom of the leaderboard, taking the heat off M&S shares even as the company’s directors feel the force of shareholder unhappiness at the AGM.