Brussels talks remain the markets’ focus

Equity markets are struggling to get up and running as a long night of discussions in Brussels leaves traders with more questions than answers.

Angela Merkel
Source: Bloomberg

Importantly, Angela Merkel has been unequivocal in her support of David Cameron and her determination to give him an agreement that he will be able to take back to the British people.

Having had the best week in over five years, the FTSE 100 has frozen today as it struggles to hang onto the psychological 6000 level. Even the strongest monthly retail sales figures for the UK in two years has not been enough to inject enthusiasm into the markets.

This inability to keep heading higher is in no small part due to traders' understanding of how important these Brussels discussions are, and how much they will shape the next six months.

With uncertainty and confusion, gold has once again enjoyed renewed appeal in overnight trading, hitting levels above $1230.

Oil remains close to $30 as traders have been unconvinced by developments from the major oil-producing nations. An agreement that didn’t include Iran in the first place, and peppered with caveats and loopholes has prevented spot prices from falling but done nothing to address the longer term issue of oversupply. Considering the high levels of global oil inventories too, it would take weeks before any agreement would start to take effect. 

Ahead of the open, we expect the Dow Jones to start 29 points higher, at 16,225.

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