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Stock markets: FTSE 100 touches an almost 3-week high

By Indrabati Lahiri

10:30, 7 December 2021

Multi-coloured stocks trading concept
European stocks reflected the same positive sentiment – Photo: Shutterstock

UK stocks touched an almost 3-week high on Tuesday, with the FTSE 100 Index pulled up by miners and strong earnings, as the end of the fourth quarter draws closer. Market sentiments were also more buoyant as investor anxieties about Omicron abated somewhat.

European stocks reflected the same positive sentiment, with the EURO STOXX 50 Index advancing, as copper prices increased further, following the relaxing of monetary policy in China, thus renewing investor hopes about commodity demand rebounding in the near future.

Overnight in Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index gained, with the US S&P 500 Index following suit as well.


16,001.20 Price
+0.470% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0262%
Short position overnight fee 0.0040%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 7.0


36,260.80 Price
+0.920% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0262%
Short position overnight fee 0.0040%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 11.0


4,596.80 Price
+0.710% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0262%
Short position overnight fee 0.0040%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 1.7


16,454.10 Price
+1.340% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0220%
Short position overnight fee -0.0002%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 8.0

What’s interesting today: Plumbing parts company Ferguson stock increased approximately 4.4% on the back of robust earnings. Ashtead Group, the international equipment rental company, also increased approximately 2.7% after increasing dividends and being optimistic about full-year results.

Image of stocks chart Stocks chart – Credit: TradingView

Why are stocks up today?

Strong earnings outlooks raised investor confidence: Robust earnings from a number of companies such as Ferguson raised investor confidence about markets recovering sooner than expected.

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  • What this means: With travel and leisure stocks recovering from the initial shock following Omicron’s discovery, and companies such as Ashtead Group being much more positive about the rest of the fourth quarter, investor sentiment is gradually improving as global markets bounce back. Today saw the FTSE 100 Index climb back up to pre-Omicron levels, with hopes that this gain will be extended over the coming days. Buoyant earnings so far also bolstered investor confidence in the resilience of the markets and provided reassurance regarding fourth-quarter performance.

Stock markets: key highlights

  • The FTSE 100 Index inched up 0.90% to 7297.6 points
  • The EURO STOXX 50 Index also climbed up 1.77% to 4210.5 points
  • Germany’s DAX Index rose 1.42% to 15598.6 points
  • France’s CAC 40 Index followed suit and increased 1.52% to 6969.8 points
  • The leading sectors were transportation and communications, whereas retail and technology services lagged behind
  • US S&P 500 futures increased 0/96% to $4634.5.

Market sentiment

  • The Cboe Volatility Index, or VIX, a measure of expected fluctuations in US stocks, dropped to 27.18 as investor anxieties reduced somewhat
  • The US Dollar Index dropped to $96.34
  • The US 10-Year Bond Yield Index increased to 1.450%.

Top stock gainers: UK and Europe

  • The best performing companies in the UK were International Consolidated Airlines Group, BT Group and Whitbread
  • International Consolidated Airlines Group recently announced that although still below pre-pandemic levels, its capacity would reach approximately 60% in the last quarter of the year
  • BT Group has reportedly been in talks with Discovery in regards to a joint venture
  • Whitbread shares were up following Peel Hunt’s recommendation to maintain its rating as ‘buy’
  • The top stock gainers in Europe were Flutter Entertainment, SAFRAN and Ab InBev
  • Flutter Entertainment shares rallied after the company was speculated to be undervalued by stockbrokers such as Peel Hunt
  • SAFRAN shares increased after the company expressed an interest in purchasing Orolia from Eurazeo
  • Ab InBev shares gained following the company setting its first growth and earnings targets under new leadership.

Top stock losers: UK and Europe

Stocks news: what you need to know today

  • Sumo Logic stock dips following earnings announcement
  • GitLab stocks increase by 4% following better-than-expected revenue estimate
  • Indian stocks open on an optimistic note
  • India’s Tata Motors’ shares rally as vehicle prices increase.

Read more: European stock market outlook 2022: shallow dips amid ECB support

Markets in this article

235.35 USD
3.9 +1.690%
BT Group PLC
1.2375 USD
0.0055 +0.450%
BT Group PLC
1.2375 USD
0.0055 +0.450%
Volatility Index
13.26 USD
-0.02 -0.150%
Volatility Index
13.26 USD
-0.02 -0.150%

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The difference between trading assets and CFDs
The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
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