Fed to boost FTSE above 7600?

Fed to boost FTSE above 7600?

Fed to boost FTSE above 7600?

Mike van Dulken and Artjom Hatsaturjants at Accendo Markets, commented to clients this morning:

FTSE 100 Index called to open +25pts at 7545, still knocking at this week’s highs to keep the up channel – albeit now narrower – intact, with rising support at 7520 and then 7450. Bulls need a break above 7555 overnight highs. Bears require a breach of 7520 rising support. Watch levels: Bullish 7555, Bearish 7520

 

Calls for a positive FTSE open are in spite of a mixed US and Asian close. This derives from potential for a hawkish Fed statement to keep upward pressure on USD and thus downward pressure on GBP (in addition to that from Westminster and Brexit) to assist UK blue-chips. Tech names may get a boost from Apple Q2 results, which quietened sceptics via solid iPhone sales, a 16% dividend hike and new $100B share buyback.

 

Asia mixed despite improvements in PMI Manufacturing (China Caixin, Japan and India), with only Australia’s ASX positive thanks to financials and Qantas results (read-across for IAG?). Wall St held back by oil off its highs dragging on Energy and negative reaction to healthcare sector results.

 

In corporate news this morning, Standard Chartered Q1 op income +7.3% YoY (+5% at constant FX) at top end of med-term target range, underlying pre-tax profit +20%, Income from China/N. Asia +13%, Fin Markets +2%, Expenses +5% but regulatory costs -2%, CT1 capital +26bp to 13.9%.  FTSE Retail may be sensitive to overnight UK BRC Shop Price data  suggesting continued deflation in APril.

 

Ocado signs partnership agreement with Sweden’s ICA (1300 stores, 36% market share, 2017 sales £8.9bn). Paddy Power Betfair Q1 revenues -2% (flat at constant FX), underlying EBITDA -8%/-6%, underlying op profit -12%/-9%, UK adversely affected by bookmaker friendly sports results Nov-Feb and racing fixture cancellations. Reduces FY guidance. Planning £500m share buyback

 

Direct Line Q1 new policies -5% (in-force policies -2.2%) as new Home partnership policies drop 50%, however, Total own brands policies +4.7% (in-force +5%). Freezing weather “hit many drivers, households and businesses hard”; Claims estimated to use group’s full annual weather budget but backs FY guidance.

 

Sage H1 organic revenues +6.3% due to slower-than-expected sales, underlying op profit -0.7%, EPS +15.5%, div +8.2%, No material change to 13 April guidance. Inmarsat Q1 revenues +4.8%, EBITDA -4.5%, net profit surges, FY outlook unchanged.

 

Royal Dutch Shell JV with China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) launches second ethylene cracker, will more than double production capacity.ConvaTec Q1 revenues +13.7% (+3.7% organic, 7.5% at constant FX), FY outlook unchanged. Ryanair April traffic +9% YoY, load factor flat at 96%.

 

Oil prices were largely flat overnight (WTI: $67.52, -0.1%, Brent: $73.19, -0.58%) despite an unexpectedly large reported build in API Crude Oil Inventories (+3.43M). This significantly outpaced analyst consensus which expected a much smaller +739K increase. Gold trades off yesterday’s $1302 lows thanks to the USD Index rally pausing before the Fed meeting.

 

In focus today, will be the all-important Fed Interest Rate monetary policy decision (7pm). No change is expected, but investors will be looking closely at the FOMC’s statement language for clues about the trajectory of hikes for the rest of this year.

 

Other important macroeconomic data today includes Eurozone Manufacturing PMI (8-9am) with consensus expecting small decreases across-the-board, adding to the argument of a slowdown in economic recovery in Europe. This will feed into 10:00am release of Eurozone Q1 GDP data, with expected to have slowed to 2.5% YoY  from a peak of  2.7% in Q4 and Q3.

 

Later in the day focus shifts to the US with of ADP Employment figures (1:15pm, est. +200K) ahead of Friday’s Non-Farm Payrolls jobs report, as well as DOE Weekly Oil Inventories, which could follow last night’s private API reports showing a surprise build in crude stocks. This would be a second week in a row that the DOE is expected to report a build (previous week +2.17M) and the question is whether that will finally put a stop to a sustained oil rally.
Big name US companies reporting Q1 results today include CBS, DowDuPont, GoPro, Kellogg and Xerox.

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Categories: Analysis, News
Tags: Apple, news, Shares

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