Stock markets: UK, European stocks fall on travel tightening
13:30, 9 December 2021
UK stocks inched lower Thursday morning, as investors looked forward to the release of important US consumer inflation data for November, due out Friday. The US consumer price index in October posted the largest 12-month increase since 1990. Investors were also concerned about the effect of additional travel and other Covid-19 restrictions on businesses and the financial markets.
European stocks reflected the same dampened sentiment. The Euro Stoxx 50 dipped as more countries on the continent bolstered travel curbs, which could further set back a travel and hospitality sector which has still not recovered fully from previous lockdowns.
Overnight in Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng (.HK50) index gained.
US S&P 500 (.US500) futures are lower.
What’s interesting today: Wizz Air, British Airways parent IAG and EasyJet all dipped over 2% as new travel restrictions are imposed in the UK. Transportation company First Group also dipped approximately 4.6% amidst uncertainty about passenger numbers if restrictions tighten further.
Why are stocks up/down today?
Increased travel restrictions: The UK has imposed additional travel restrictions on inbound travelers, such as RT-PCR tests before coming into the country as well as on the second day after arrival.
What is your sentiment on UK100?
- What this means: Travelers who previously hoped their double vaccinated status may grant them some relief from testing procedures will be disappointed, as the UK tightens its coronavirus restrictions on inbound travelers following the discovery of the new Omicron variant. This also deals a blow to the businesses with significant overseas activity as well as the travel and hospitality industry in general, which has suffered greatly since the beginning of the pandemic.
Stock markets: key highlights
- The FTSE 100 (.UK100) index inched lower 0.02% to 7,335.4 points
- The Euro Stoxx 50 (.EU50)index dipped 0.42% to 4,215.4 points
- Germany’s DAX (.DE40) index traded mostly flat at 15,686.6 points
- France’s CAC 40 (,FR40) index edged up 0.22% to 7,030.3 points
- The leading sectors were consumer durables and communications, whereas retail trade and technology services lagged behind
- US S&P 500 futures inched down 0.39% to 4680.50
- The CBOE Volatility index, or VIX (.VIX), a measure of expected fluctuations in US stocks inched up to 20.65
- The US dollar index dropped to $96.17
- The US 10-year bond yield index traded flat at 1.54%
Top stock gainers: UK and Europe
- The best performing companies in the UK were BT Group, Berkeley Group Holdings and Informa
- BT Group has recently been the subject of takeover speculation
- Berkeley Group Holdings recently increased its earnings forecast by 5% for every year until 2025
- Informa recently announced a share buyback program of approximately £1 bn
- The top stock gainers in Europe were SAFRAN, BBVA and Airbus
- SAFRAN recently announced that it would be acquiring Orolia
- BlindLook partnered with BBVA in order to provide a better banking experience for the visually impaired
- Airbus is expected to overtake Boeing as Dutch KLM’s primary supplier, leading with the supply of A321neo jets
Top stock losers: UK and Europe
- The worst performing companies in the UK were Ocado Group, Darktrace and Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust
- Ocado Group previously announced a tie-up with The Kroger Co to deliver online groceries to consumers in the US Northeast
- Darktrace AI was recently adopted by Sir Robert McAlpine
- Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust recently announced its investments in a series of companies including three blockchain companies
- The top stock losers in Europe were VINCI, Infineon and LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton
- VINCI announced that it would be undertaking the building of Lidl France’s regional headquarters and logistics hub in Pas-de-Calais
- Infineon was recently given a buy rating by UBS, which the bank maintained even now