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FTSE 100 likely to trade higher in weekend markets

The blue-chip index closed on a high, up over 3% following tentative optimism surrounding a possible drug treatment for coronavirus, with it capable of trading higher in weekend markets available with IG.

At the start of Friday’s trading session, the FTSE 100 was up over 3% following tentative optimism surrounding a possible drug treatment for coronavirus.

Joshua Mahony, senior market analyst at IG, believes that the trial results from US firm Gilead Sciences are being viewed by many investors as “the potential beginning of the end for this coronavirus crisis”.

However, a combination of "no end in sight" for the UK’s nationwide lockdown and China reportedly posting its first quarterly loss since 1992 curbed the FTSE 100’s momentum in the latter stages of Friday’s trading, falling from a high of 5839.33 and closing at 5786.96 – still 158 points and 2.82% higher than the day before.

Looking ahead, the FTSE 100 Futures market is already trading a touch higher, up 1.11%, after the blue-chip index closed on high note this week. As such, the index is likely to continue to see gains in weekend markets which are available on IG’s trading platform.

FTSE 100 stocks to watch

  • Flutter Entertainment (FLTR)

The owner of Paddy Power Betfair published its total revenues for the three months to March 31, revealing that betting turnover had risen despite the cancellation of many sports due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Total revenue reached £547 million for Q1 2020, representing a 16% increase. Its share price has almost followed suit on Friday, rising by 15.67% to levels not seen since the wholesale postponement of professional sporting events.

The operator was thankful for most of its March revenue from the US and Australian horse racing markets, which have continued behind closed doors. There have been positive noises regarding a return for professional football in Europe too, with Germany’s Bundesliga plotting a return behind closed doors in May, which is sure to attract high-profile betting interest.

  • InterContinental Hotels (IHG)

Now could be the time to consider going long with Intercontinental Hotels Group following its double upgrade from ‘underweight’ to ‘overweight’ by Barclays. Analysts believe IHG has the “lowest operating leverage” compared with other chains in the European hotel sector.

IHG rose by 10.89% on Friday and with some analysts anticipating a “material” share price recovery following the pandemic, we might see continued momentum over the weekend.

  • easyJet (EZJ)

There is also renewed optimism surrounding Britain’s budget airline easyJet. The company confirmed this week that it had raised almost £2 billion in additional liquidity to survive the coronavirus lockdown.

This was generated through short-term loans, the Bank of England’s covid corporate financing facility (CCFF) and its credit facility. easyJet is also engaging with interested parties on a possible sale and leaseback of its aircraft which could help to cover the grounding shortfall for up to nine months.

As European nations like Austria and Germany take baby steps towards reopening their countries, the countdown has begun until passengers can take non-essential flights again.

What is weekend trading?

It’s possible to trade forex and indices like the FTSE 100 during Saturday and Sunday with IG. Our world-leading trading platform is the only solution to offer weekend trading. Using CFDs, you can be agile within our weekend markets. Whether it’s breaking news about the coronavirus pandemic – or central bank measures to ease the strain on global markets – you don’t have to wait until the markets open on Monday to trade.

The weekend prices for indices and forex are quoted separately to their weekday counterparts, based on our view of the prospects for that market given client business and news flow. As a result, you can use these markets to hedge against risk on your weekday positions.

Buy long or sell short on the weekend UK 100 index this weekend by opening an IG account today.

This information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Markets Limited. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients. See full non-independent research disclaimer and quarterly summary.

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