FTSE gains ground as trade tensions continue to cause swings in markets

After a rough start to the week, the FTSE has reversed directions and posted gains. In the North American session, the pair is at 7,279, up 0.43% on the day. There are no British releases on the schedule.

The uncertainty surrounding Brexit and global trade tensions are making fund managers increasingly pessimistic over the pound. This could bode well for the blue-chip FTSE, as investors look for attractive alternatives to the pound. Major financial services companies are reducing their exposure to the pound, with some going further and shorting the currency. The May government has been unable to present the public with a clear roadmap for departing the EU, and a no-deal remains a possibility, although both the EU and Britain are in agreement that a no-deal exit would be disastrous. Given the turmoil over Brexit, the pound is likely to face further headwinds in the coming weeks.

The trade war between the U.S. and China has shaken global equity markets, and the FTSE continues to show strong volatility. In the latest bout between the two super-economies, the U.S. slapped tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese products, and China responded with counter-tariffs on $60 billion in U.S. products. Despite the tariff tussle, talks continue between the U.S. and China, with the next round of negotiations scheduled for Beijing. The tariffs have made huge headlines, but do not take effect for several weeks.

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Economic Calendar

Wednesday (May 15)

  • There are no British events

*All release times are DST

*Key events are in bold

FTSE, Wednesday, May 15 at 11:15 DST

Previous Close: 7,241 Open: 7,261 High: 7,311 Low: 7,219 Close: 7,279