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Investment market update

Early Trading

UK stocks are expected to open lower this morning as there was a cooling of buyer interest in Asia overnight following news that the Kuwaiti oil strike had ended.

World Markets

Asian stocks were mostly higher, extending gains from the previous session, with investor sentiment bolstered by higher commodity prices, weakness in the US dollar and signs of economic stabilisation in China.

US stocks rose, extending a four month high as commodity producers rallied amid mixed results in corporate earnings. Netflix fell 13% after its forecast indicated weakening subscriber growth in the second quarter. IBM retreated 5.6% as its second quarter profit estimate was short of projections.

UK stocks closed higher as commodity prices rallied, boosted by hopes demand for metals in China will increase. Anglo American shares rose 8.5%, with Antofagasta up 7.6% and silver miner Fresnillo up 5.1%, after the price of silver hit a 10 month high.

Headlines

As bond markets get tougher for banks to make money, debt management chiefs across Europe have a new sales pitch: whatever you want, when you want. Primary dealers, the market-makers who buy securities directly from governments, are becoming more selective in what they will buy. So sovereign issuers are experimenting with new maturities, smaller auctions and liquidity boosting measures, while some are consulting more with investors before going ahead with syndicated offerings.

A group of international steel producing countries has called for urgent action to curb overproduction. The call comes days after international talks to find measures to tackle the industry crisis failed. The joint statement comes from the US, Canada, the EU, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, Switzerland and Turkey.

US tech giant Intel is shedding 12,000 jobs as it seeks to cut reliance on the declining personal computer market. The maker of computer chips will take a $1.2bn charge to cover restructuring costs. The job cuts, about 11% of Intel’s workforce, will be made over the next 12 months, Intel said in a statement.

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