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Investment market update

This bulletin provides you with an overview of the latest market news from around the world – world markets, key headlines, stocks and market data.

Early Trading

UK equities are expected to open higher this morning, despite Greece overnight becoming the first western country ever to default on a loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

World Markets

Shares in Asia were trading higher on Wednesday as investors hoped a last-minute deal for Greece could be agreed.

Stocks on Wall Street closed up slightly as investors followed talks between Greece and its creditors.

UK and European stocks closed lower on Tuesday, as investor expectations throughout anticipated Greece would miss its payment to the IMF.

Headlines

Greece has missed the deadline for a €1.6bn (£1.1bn) payment to the IMF, hours after eurozone ministers refused to extend its bailout, but the ministers say they will discuss a last-minute request from Greece for a new two-year bailout on Wednesday. Greece is the first advanced country to fail to repay a loan to the IMF and is now formally in arrears. The IMF confirmed that Greece had failed to make the payment, shortly after 22:00 GMT on Tuesday. ‘We have informed our Executive Board that Greece is now in arrears and can only receive IMF financing once the arrears are cleared,’ said IMF spokesman Gerry Rice.

The Airports Commission has backed a third Heathrow runway, saying it will add £147bn in economic growth and 70,000 jobs by 2050. It would also connect Britain to over 40 new destinations around the world. Sir Howard Davies’s report said that the new runway should come with severe restrictions to reduce the environmental and noise effects. Night flights should be banned and the government should make a Parliamentary pledge not to build a fourth runway. It also recommends an aviation noise levy to fund insulation for homes and schools, and a legal commitment should be made on air quality.

The UK’s biggest energy suppliers probably will escape a recommendation to break up companies when the nation’s anti-trust regulator completes a review of how best to reduce costs and spur competition. The provisional findings of the Competition and Markets Authority are “highly unlikely” to delve into the structure of the country’s energy industry or the wholesale markets, said Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at uSwitch, a UK price comparison site. Instead, the regulator will focus on how to get consumers more engaged in managing their bills, she said.

Stocks

Shares in Tesco fell 2.8% while Sainsbury’s dropped 3.25% after the latest Kantar Worldpanel survey found both had seen sales fall 1.3% in the 12 weeks to 21 June.

Shares in Ocado gained 3.7% following the online grocer’s latest results. Ocado reported pre-tax profits of £7.2m for the half-year to 17 May, down slightly from £7.5m a year earlier, with gross sales up 15.7% to £511.9m. The company also said it hoped to sign a deal to sell its technology to overseas retailers by the end of the year.

Shares in Sony recovered slightly in Wednesday trading in Japan – after losses in the previous session. They were up about 1.7% having closed down 8.0% on Tuesday after plans were announced to raise billions of dollars in a sale of shares and convertible bonds.

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