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Business news: Russia/Ukraine tensions, new UK Covid rules

By Jenny McCall

13:10, 8 December 2021

A picture of a gas pipe tied in a knot
Oil prices fell once again - Photo: Shutterstock

Key points

Oil prices fall: The question on the minds of investors today is whether Russia will invade Ukraine. This unsettled the markets and oil prices fell once again.

The UK government is set to announce new Covid-19 rules to stop the spread of the virus. These may include working-from-home and other measures. 

The stock price for Argo Blockchain (ARB) surged over 4% earlier this morning to more than 114p before falling back to 110p. The jump was on the back of news that mining-as-a-software company Argo had reached an “amicable resolution” to pending litigation with crypto lender Celsius Network.

Nestlé (NESN)  is expected to sell shares back to L’Oréal. Nestlé – which controls a wide range of brands from S Pellegrino to Nespresso and Purina – is set to trim its stake in L’Oréal (OR) from 23.3% to 20.1% in an €8.9bn ($10bn) buyback deal for the French cosmetics company. L’Oréal will pay €400 per share with a mixture of cash and debt.

Fitch Ratings revised its growth expectations for the Indian economy down today to 8.4% for the current financial year ending March 2022 (FY22) from a previous forecast of an 8.7% growth rate.

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Business and economic news

  • Travel and tourism group TUI (TUI1) saw its stock price drop by almost 3% in early morning trading after delivering a mixed annual report.
  • Bahrain agreement: French-based vaccine specialist Valneva saw its stock price jump 12% in mid-morning trading to €23.60 after announcing it signed an advance purchase agreement with the kingdom of Bahrain.
  • Shares in Man Group, the UK fund manager, topped the FTSE 250 on Wednesday after announcing the launch of a $250m (£189.4m) share buyback programme.

Markets

Stocks: Stock markets in Australia and Japan extended gains on Wednesday as fears over the Omicron Covid-19 variant eased. While investors await the Bank of Canada’s interest rate decision today, futures for Canadas main stock index rose as gold prices jumped to one-week high.

DOGE/USD

0.13 Price
+1.610% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.0012872

SOL/USD

168.82 Price
-1.000% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 2.2652

BTC/USD

66,525.50 Price
-0.770% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 106.00

ETH/USD

3,490.29 Price
-0.550% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 6.00

Oil:  This morning WTI Crude (T) was down by 0.51% to $71.68 while Brent Crude (B) slipped 0.32% to $75.20. There is good news for US natural gas prices, which saw a 2% rebound today.

Gold: Gold prices rose today as the US spot gold price was up 0.2% at $1,788.33 per ounce in early morning trading. US gold futures also rose 0.3%.

Forex: The British pound fell aganist the US dollar today as reports emerged that new Covid-19 restrictions will come into play. 

Crypto: Bitcoin fell 4.06% today, and ethereum dropped 2.42%, reversing yesterday’s gains.

What to watch this week

  • US electric vehicle maker Tesla (TSLA) has sold 52,859 China-made vehicles in November, including 21,127 for export, the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) announced yesterday.
  • A report in Reuters has announced that the Caribbean country of Trinidad and Tobago will launch bidding rounds next year for onshore and shallow-water areas on top of last weeks launch of an auction of 17 deep water oil and gas blocks.
  • The US will release its consumer price inflation data on Friday, and investors are eagerly awaiting the results. On Friday, the UK will report its gross domestic product figures.
  • As crypto gains more mainstream attention, Visa (V), one of the world's largest payment processors, today launched a global crypto advisory service for its banking clients and merchants.

Read more: Oil prices slip as West weighs Russian sanctions over Ukraine

Markets in this article

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Argo Blockchain plc
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ARBgb
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ARBgb
Argo Blockchain plc
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