FTSE 100 advances on US jobs data, still ends down for week
It has been three weeks since Ben Bernanke cast the financial markets into uncertainty with his comments on the Federal Reserve’s quantitative easing policy, drawing to a close rallies across the globe that had seen records broken in almost every major index. The US central bank has been purchasing $85bn worth of bonds every month, injecting vast quantities of funds into the economy in an attempt to shock the economy back to life. This program has allowed investors to be extremely bullish in their trading, nudging even the most conservative bears into the markets at points when they would ordinarily have remained on the sidelines.
The FTSE 100 has declined 6 percent since those comments were made on May 22nd and has shown no real signs of that trend coming to an end until today, when the index made an advance of 75.88 points, or 1.20 percent, to close at 6,411.99.
Finance based stocks made the largest gains within the London blue chips, with insurers making huge strides forwards. Prudential PLC advanced by 58.00 points, or 5.47 percent, to 1118.00. The company has been earmarked as one of the financial companies in the US at is simply “too big to fail”, particularly due to their solid foundations that set them apart from the companies who were plunged into turmoil during the 2008 financial crisis.
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation lead Barclays to an advance of 11.10 points, or 3.68 percent, as it sold off its 1.3 percent stake in the company at 308.5p per share, signaling to investors that there was potentially value in the stock at its trading price of 303.3p.
Another big stock sale that caused a stir earlier in the week was that of MoneySuperMarket.com, a constituent of the FTSE 250. Simon Nixon, the founder of the company, sold a 18.5 percent stake in the online comparison service for around £200m. This has lead to a steady rise for the stock price which added 8p, or 3.9 percent, to it’s stock price of 203p.
The big decliners for the day were Aberdeen Asset Management PLC, who lost gains made earlier in the week with a decline of 7.10, or 1.68 percent, to close at 415.70. ARM Holdings PLC also continued their torrid period with a decline of 14.00, or 1.46 percent, to close at 864.50. The Chipmaker has been enduring a period of drastic declines due to ARM’s situation in the US, where they are suffering on the New York Stock Exchange.