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Markets traded broadly sideways over February, with January having already seen a rebound from fourth quarter lows. European equities were the strongest performers rising 3.8%, just ahead of the 3% gain in the US and Japanese markets. Asia and emerging markets lagged other areas, the latter being down 0.7% over the month.
Last week’s Brexit saga was fantastic entertainment but ultimately events went largely as expected and have left the situation looking slightly clearer.
In this week’s Diary, reasons to be optimistic about business and investment despite the Great Fire of Brexit which continues to consume all in its path. Also, an attempt to put China in perspective. The world is bigger than Westminster.
The FTSE 100 is called to open 16 points higher at 7201. Asian stocks headed to recoup much of the losses last week that were the worst so far this year. U.S. futures also edged up as worries about the global slowdown appeared to ebb, though there was no change in narrative for bonds, where yields remain low. Japan’s equities led gains at the start on Friday with little obvious trigger, and China’s domestic shares also jumped before paring gains in the afternoon. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang announced tax cuts that reinforce expectations for an eventual pick-up China’s economy. Watch technology stocks following reassuring results from Broadcom, which may prop up the chip sub-sector. Watch European chipmakers like Infineon, STMicroelectronics and AMS for read-across from the numbers, plus any impact on chip equipment names like ASML and BE Semiconductor. Separately, software firms Oracle and Adobe disappointed investors, so keep an eye on the likes of SAP, Micro Focus, Dassault Systemes and Nemetschek.
Get the inside view from Quilter Cheviot Investment Director, David Miller, in this award-winning weekly diary.
Winner, Wealth Manager of the Year– City of London Wealth Management Awards 2017
Gold Rating, Diary of a Fund Manager - Portfolio Adviser Wealth Manager Awards 2017
Winner, Outstanding Achievement - City of London Wealth Management Awards 2016