Good morning. The FTSE 100 is set to open in the red as virus cases continue to rise in the UK, triggering fears of further local lockdowns – including in London.
It follows reports over the weekend that Boris Johnson has discussed plans to reimpose a shutdown on the capital if cases start to surge.
5 things to start your day
1) Record run on Wall Street sets alarm bells ringing Investors warned. US stocks “cannot defy economic gravity indefinitely” after the wave of central bank stimulus triggers market turnaround.
2) Microsoft confirms plans to buy TikTok after ‘personal’ talk with Donald Trump. The software giant said on Sunday that it would “move quickly to pursue discussions” with TikTok’s Beijing-based parent company, ByteDance, aiming to complete them by no later than September 15.
3) ‘Wrecking ball’ reversal puts 6,000 casino jobs at risk. Bosses accused the prime minister of “swinging a wrecking ball right through the middle of our industry” as plans to re-open casinos on August 1 were put on ice on Friday.
4) Bank of England urged to come clean on negative rates. Financial markets are increasingly betting that the Monetary Policy Committee will take interest rates below zero.
5) Vast majority of mid-sized firms in danger unless trade picks up. A survey of 500 medium-sized businesses conducted for advice firm BDO found that firms had been forced to take out an additional £21m in debt on average to fund themselves through the Covid crisis, with one in 10 unlikely to be able to fully pay it back.
What happened overnight
Shares advanced in Japan and China, where mainland-listed technology stocks surged on expectations of support from Beijing in response to U.S. moves on Chinese-owned software companies.
Equities declined in Hong Kong. Australia was flat as Victoria state further tightened virus curbs. S&P 500 futures were little changed and European ones ticked higher. Oil dipped. Gold continues to trade near record highs.
Infections are picking up again in some U.S. states, and American lawmakers are continuing talks over a virus-relief package.
A senior Federal Reserve official on Sunday urged Congress to act to support those laid off due to the pandemic and suggested a fresh lockdown. The Philippines imposed a stricter lockdown for Manila and nearby areas. Stocks in Manila had the biggest drop in Asia, down more than 3%.
Coming up today
Hiscox, HSBC, Senior, Synthomer
Manufacturing PMI final (UK, China, eurozone, US, Japan, Germany, France, Italy, Spain); Q2 GDP (Japan)
Real Life. Real News. Real Voices
Help us tell more of the stories that matterBecome a founding member
Subscribe to the newsletter news
We hate SPAM and promise to keep your email address safe