Market report

London loses top stock market spot to Paris

London Stock Exchange

London has lost its position as Europe’s largest stock market, to Paris, according to Bloomberg, which says the combined market value of primary listings on Monday on the Paris bourse ($2.823tn) surpassed that of the London Stock Exchange ($2.821tn) – finally closing a gap which has been narrowing since the Brexit referendum.

One recently-departed member of the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee lamented that leaving the EU has “permanently damaged” not only the City of London, but “the UK economy as a whole”.

Michael Saunders stated: “It has reduced the economy’s potential output significantly, eroded business investment.”

He added: “If we hadn’t had Brexit we probably wouldn’t be talking about an austerity budget this week – the need for tax rises and spending cuts wouldn’t be there if Brexit hadn’t reduced the economy’s potential output so much.”

The milestone shift on Monday came as French stocks were buoyed by optimism over the demand for French luxury goods in response to China’s slight easing of Covid-19 restrictions, while the sharper fall in the pound’s value against the dollar compared with that of the euro this year has also played a role, noted Bloomberg.

4.30pm: London remains on front foot

The FTSE 100 was briefly 70 points higher before closing up 67.13 points at 7,385.17 as Thursday’s Autumn Statement is viewed positively against the backdrop of an easier political backdrop, even if the economy remains fragile.

There are also growing hopes that peak price rises may have passed. In the US, Fed officials are now talking openly about taking the foot off the monetary brakes.

The biggest risers on the FTSE 100 were Ocado, up 113.6p to 925.6p, Informa, up 31.8p to 584.4p, B&M, up 17.8p to 403.3p, BT, up 5.15p to 124.95p, and Admiral Group, up 74p to 2,120p.

The biggest fallers were Harbour Energy, down 36.5p to 342.6p, Intermediate Capital Group, down 47p to 1,242.5p, Unite, down 24p to 948p, London Stock Exchange, down 198p to 8,022p, and Flutter Entertainment, down 240p to 11,430p.

8.40am: SAM acquired

Kingswood has acquired Glasgow-based Strategic Asset Managers (SAM) which becomes the first Scottish firm in the consolidator’s network. 

Full story here

8.05am: Biden talks

President Joe Biden’s will hold talks today with Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping amid a period of heightened tension over trade and human rights.

The talks take place on the Indonesian island of Bali before a Group of 20 (G20) summit which will be overshadowed by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The two leaders are expected to discuss Taiwan, Ukraine and North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, issues that will also loom over the G20 that opens on Tuesday without Russian President Vladimir Putin in attendance.

The FTSE 100 was up 27 points at 7,345.06 in the first minutes of trading as markets prepare for a week of key data on jobs (Tue) and inflation (Wed), culminating in the Autumn Statement on Thursday which is not expected to deliver any shocks.

The pound was quoted at $1.1759 early Monday, down from $1.1781 late Friday. Brent fell to $95.57 from $96.32.

7am: Joules

Clothing and homeware company Joules has appointed administrators after talks to refinance the company broke down with agreement. Trading in its shares on the Alternative Investment Market have been suspended from today.

Full story here

7am: Wood agrees to settle lawsuit

Aberdeen-based energy services company Wood will pay Enterprise Products $115 million to settle a legacy lawsuit against Amec Foster Wheeler, a company Wood acquired in 2017.

Full story here

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