Higher US unemployment and a slower rate of job creation did damage to the dollar earlier, now down more than 10% down against the euro since the spring. To cap things off previous US month job data was also trimmed, with June and July both seeing chunky employment falls.
The soft jobs news was a fillip for the pound. At 3.30pm sterling was +0.18% up against the greenback at $1.2954. However euro nerves were in evidence as investors begin to factor in next Thursday’s ECB meeting which should give more guidance on the bank’s tapering – or cheap money – direction. The euro was trading late afternoon at $1.1884, down -0.20%.
An honourable mention meanwhile to the UK’s PMI numbers, out this morning. IHS Markit’s purchasing managers’ index saw a manufacturing lift from 55.1 in July to 56.9 in August – a four month high. More support for the pound, then.
“New export orders,” said IHS Markit’s Duncan Brock, “didn’t disappoint either with new business wins from Europe and the USA – which all supported the sector’s fastest rise in jobs growth since June 2014.”
- UK FTSE 100 7,438.50 +0.11%
- Dow 22,004 +0.26%
- S&P 500 2,475.82 +0.17%
- Nasdaq 6,427.29 -0.02%
- Nikkei 225 19,691.47 +0.23%
- DAX 12,172.27 +0.97%
- CAC 40 5,133.27 +0.94%
- Gold 1,324.98 +0.14%
- Oil WTI 46.58 -1.40%
UK manufacturing boosted; fuel prices creep higher
More on the UK’s manufacturing uptick. The key question is whether the positive start to the second half of the year can be sustained says IHS Markit director Rob Dobson. Pressures lurk, including price inflation.
“This [improvement] is looking increasingly likely during the near-term, given the breadth of the expansion. Business conditions improved across the three main sub- sectors – consumer, intermediate and investment goods – and at smaller and large-scale producers alike. Business confidence," continued Dobson, "also rose to one of its highest levels in over a year."
Next, a new warning on fuel prices. The RAC drivers’ association says the price of unleaded could climb by 4p though the price anxiety is not shared by the AA – yet.
Petrol prices were already heading up because of the increase in the price of oil since mid August," AA spokesperson Luke Bosdet told the BBC. "But they still have a little way to go before reaching the 119p of April and 120p of February." Some of the price uplift is being blamed on Hurricane Harvey supply disruption.
A farewell to Yellow Pages
It’s goodbye to Yellow Pages. The near ubiquitous UK business directory will be despatched to its maker by owner Yell following its final publication next year. The Evening Standard claims the last remaining print run will come from Brighton.
Though Yellow Pages is still thought to be profitable, the online world is making it redundant for many. Most firms have a substantial online presence. More revenue, then, for the likes of Google and Facebook though Yell.com will continue to develop its online footprint.
Breaking news: Legal & General says it will vote against the re-appointment of Sports Direct chairman Keith Hellawell at the company's AGM. Legal & General join Royal London Asset Management in opposing Hellawell's appointment.