More pressure on the US dollar as the euro found its strength today. The European currency benefited from more positive German noises that Angela Merkel could be supported by a new German coalition. Senior SPD (opposition) members are thought to have grown impatient with leader Martin Schulz and his unwillingness to negotiate with Merkel.
“The SPD is deeply convinced there should be discussions,” Hubertus Heil, SPD party general secretary told the media, according to politico. “The SPD will not refuse to talk.” The euro soared, up almost +0.70% at 4.15pm at 1.1933.
Sterling also lifted but the rate of ascent was much less dramatic at +0.26%, rising to $1.3343. Against the euro the pound was almost -0.50% lower with the euro valued at 0.8945.
Tonight the FTSE 100 ended seven points lower at 7,409.6 with Paddy Power Betfair climbing more than +3% while housebuilder Persimmon was down more than -3.5%. Stateside the Nasdaq and S&P 500 hit new highs with retailers seeing some buoyancy on Black Friday. The Black Friday sales frenzy sees very variable figures bandied around. Best wait till the dust settles…
- UK FTSE 100 7,409.64 -0.10%
- Dow 23,570.16 +0.19%
- S&P 500 2,602.17 +0.20%
- Nasdaq 6,880.94 +0.20%
- Nikkei 225 22,550.85 +0.12%
- DAX 13,060.16 +0.40%
- CAC 40 5,389.36 +0.18%
- Gold 1,292.30 -0.35%
- Oil WTI 58.57 +0.95%
Record Black Friday sales claimed
…but super-quickly, Barclaycard claims it processed 998 transactions per second between 1-2pm GMT today. Apparently a record high. Increasing numbers of stores though view Black Friday as utterly tiresome – terrible for margins, delivery pressure and general stress.
Retail Week's Gemma Goldfingle, on assignment in Oxford Street, told the BBC that stores which held themselves above the BF fray appeared to be doing better than BF participants. She tweeted: “Selfridges. No mention of Black Friday in store. Busiest retailer by a country mile.”
Uber goes for Supreme Court fight
This afternoon it emerged that Uber will take its employment status fight right the way to the Supreme Court. The Employment Appeal Tribunal earlier this month pushed back Uber’s claim on the status of its freelance staff.
Unions continue to claim that staff should be classified as "workers" rather than being self-employed. “Uber cannot go on flouting UK law with impunity and depriving people of their minimum wage rights,” said Uber co-claimant James Farrar earlier this month.
“We have done everything we can, now it is time for the Mayor of London, Transport for London and the Transport Secretary to step up and use their leverage.”
Breaking news: New figures from HMRC sees 115 senior finance directors fined for account lapses in the last financial year. A +150% rise compared to 2013.