Buyers stage a comeback

Heading into the close the FTSE is 60 points higher, as European markets stage a comeback.

Source: Bloomberg

Bulls have come out of hiding today, helping to recover some lost ground in equity markets. China’s power to shock has diminished for now, but nervousness still persists. In any event, with major US banks still to publish numbers, the potential for bullish momentum still looks limited.

Morrisons shareholders have received a belated Christmas present, as their embattled holdings in the supermarket have jumped 9%. However, for now the figures are but a blip in a broader, disheartening trend. It may have seen a rise in transaction numbers, but David Potts needs to repeat the trick in the months to come.

Oil firms big and small are in the news today, but mostly for the wrong reasons. BP is cutting jobs in its North Sea division while Premier Oil has been downgraded. Both of these are symptomatic of the seemingly-endless fall in oil prices, and while whispers of an OPEC meeting circulate, at the moment these are just mirages on a bleak horizon.

Wall Street has inched higher so far, a day after the S&P 500 came within a whisker of 1900 and then decided a bounce was in order. However, the rally already looks under pressure as reasons to be bullish have yet to materialise.

US banks will have to deliver some healthy numbers, while investors will continue to hope that Chinese markets maintain their general quiet attitude.  

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