Much interest (more below) in a possible Fiat-Chrysler deal with Chinese auto giant Great Wall. At 4pm the euro was up 0.55% at $1.1817 helped by positive German growth sentiment; the pound was also up against the dollar at $1.2905, up 0.26%.
Any more fundamental currency moves look dependent on nuance and tone from the Jackson Hole symposium, opening later in the week. Wednesday sees some PMI numbers from the Eurozone coming through. In the meantime sterling seems somewhat range-bound.
Earlier today Rightmove claimed UK house price growth is faltering with the average August house price slumping from £317,421 to £313,663. However the pound shrugged off the news.
Meanwhile oil is down hard after Friday’s big rally: WTI crude is more than -1.4% lower at $47.83 while Brent crude’s fall is even more etreme, down -1.78% at $51.78. The FTSE 100 closed down five points at 7,318.
- UK FTSE 100 7,318 -0.07%
- Dow 21,649.22 -0.12%
- S&P 500 2,423.33 -0.07%
- Nasdaq 6,193.73 -0.37%
- Nikkei 225 19,393.13 -0.40%
- DAX 12,048.16 -0.97%
- CAC 40 5,074.33 -0.80%
- Gold 1,296.80 +0.40%
- Oil WTI 47.81 -1.44%
Great Wall to bid for Fiat Chrysler - possibly
The big business news targets one of America’s biggest brands – Jeep. China’s Great Wall Motors is looking hard, according to Reuters, at making an offer for Italian-US car maker Fiat Chrysler, owner of the iconic 4x4 brand.
Listed in Milan, shares in Fiat Chrysler Automobiles were 6% higher this afternoon at €11.37. The Chinese interest has plenty of synergies given Great Wall’s SUV model line-up (it also has a big truck offering). Great Wall’s market cap is around $18bn.
However it’s quite a tangled web. Fiat Chrysler also own the Alfa Romeo and Maserati brands plus RAM trucks.
But if a deal came through the Chinese maker would have longer term synergies to insulate itself from the costs of developing electric and autonomous vehicles, not to mention increasing overseas competition. But Jeep is the biggest jewel, by far.
Game Digital to pilot Maplins tie-up
Back to the UK high street and retailer Game Digital is looking at trial outlets in Maplin stores. Though Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley has a major stake in GD the retailer’s profits are under considerable pressure; Game Digital shares are down more than 60% this year.
The retailer has been hit by a shortage of Nintendo Switch consoles as well as a sparser array of games. Game Digital was floated at 200p by US hedge fund player Elliott Advisors; its shares peaked at 360p at the end of 2014 and are now worth 24p.
Breaking news: Shares in Provident Financial slump 5.78% while shares in Shire are down 4%. The FTSE 100's biggest riser was Micro Focus International, up 3.17% at 2243p.