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Investment market update

Early Trading

UK markets have opened up higher this morning rebounding from yesterday as investors seek buying opportunities.

It’s only natural for investors to be concerned about short-term fluctuations in stock markets. The sharpest falls and the largest gains are often concentrated into short periods of time. Despite the short term fluctuations caused by market disruptions, history shows that investing in a well-diversified portfolio has proved the best way to grow capital over the long term.

World Markets

World markets continued to be concerned over the continuing fall in oil prices and slowing growth in China. Oil prices have now fallen to below $28 a barrel.

Headlines

Prime Minister David Cameron is to urge business leaders to back the UK staying in a reformed European Union (EU), in a speech at the World Economic Forum. Cameron will hold discussions with political and corporate leaders at the annual gathering in Davos. The talks come ahead of an EU summit next month where he hopes to finalise his package of reforms.

Car manufacturing in the UK has hit a 10-year high, with more vehicles exported than ever before, according to the industry’s trade group. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said almost 1.6 million cars were built in 2015, up 3.9% on 2014. Nearly four out of five cars were exported, up by 2.7% on 2014, despite falls in sales to China and Russia. But this was offset by economic recovery in Europe, where demand for UK-built cars increased by 11% in 2015.

New data from the Office for National Statistics show that the employment rate hit 74%, according to the latest figures. That’s the highest since records began in 1971. The tally of unemployed people fell by 99,000 to 1.68m, while the unemployment rate was 5.1 per cent, down from 5.8% a year earlier. The ONS says that rate “has not been lower since August to October 2005”.

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