Poorer than expected US Nonfarm Payroll numbers saw the euro climb against the dollar to new annual highs – $1.273 at 4pm today – approaching 1.1300 levels. The pound slipped -0.05% to $1.2873.
Petter Lundvik, economist at Handelsbanken Capital Markets, said he still expected the US Fed to hike stateside interest rates by 0.25% in June and September, despite the weaker payroll data. “Another 0.50 percentage points this year would be exactly in line with the central bank’s forward guidance.”
Increased confidence from Japan saw the Nikkei soaring beyond 20,000, the highest point since midsummer 2015. Oil prices continued to retreat with WTI hitting under $47 at points earlier – more than a 2.75% decline.
Despite clipping – almost – 7,600 points earlier on Friday the FTSE 100 ended just three points up at 7,547.63. Randgold and Fresnillo saw 3.87% and 3.77% climbs. European shares also rallied with the Dax up strongly.
- UK FTSE 100 7,547.63 +0.05%
- Dow 21,168.38 +0.11%
- S&P 500 2,434.19 +0.17%
- Nasdaq 6,272.32 +0.41%
- Dax 12,828.57 +1.29%
- Cac 40 5,340.37 +0.41%
- Nikkei 225 20,177.28 +1.60%
- Gold 1,275.18 +0.64%
- Oil WTI 47.38 -2.03%
UK construction gears up
Better news about the UK economy emerged from the Markit/CIPS construction purchasing managers' index, surging from 53.1 to 56 (any result north of 50 is a positive number).
Much of May's uptick was from a new pipeline of projects and underlying demand for labour and material supply chains. However commercial development remained the weakest sub-category.
Away from the bullish headline figure some caution was expressed overall by Markit: "Despite the improvement in new work, construction firms noted that heightened economic uncertainty continued to act as a brake on client spending."