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London terror aftermath | Calamatta Cuschieri

A lacklustre trading day on Thursday saw investors cautious about making any big moves, as they digested the attack in London

calamatta_cuschieri
Calamatta Cuschieri
24 March 2017, 9:09am
European markets closed marginally higher, propelled by a rally in the Pound
European markets closed marginally higher, propelled by a rally in the Pound
A lacklustre trading day on Thursday saw investors cautious about making any big moves, as they digested the attack in London on Wednesday afternoon, which left at least five people dead and dozens injured. European markets closed marginally higher, propelled by a rally in the Pound after retail sales beat expectations and calmed fears about rising inflation.

US stocks rose towards the end of the session though, erasing an earlier decline and putting the Dow on track to end a five-day losing streak, as investors wagered that a key vote on a healthcare bill would either be delayed or result in passage of the legislation, a positive sign for President Donald Trump’s ability to enact his ambitious electoral agenda.

The healthcare vote

Markets paid close attention to a key vote in the House on a Republican-led healthcare Bill. The Bill, if signed into law, would effectively repeal and replace Obamacare and thereby accomplish one of President Trump’s first legislative goals.

The House vote is crucial for the Trump agenda. Trump has said the repeal and replacement of Obamacare must happen before action can be taken on his other plans, including a major tax reduction. Republicans need 215 votes for the legislation to pass.

Meanwhile, advances in Goldman Sachs and Citigroup helped lift the main index to positive territory on Thursday.

Next, Apple up

Retail shares were the best performers on Thursday as several of them posted earnings. British clothing firm Next stood out. Its shares soared 8% after the company maintained its final dividend at £1.05 and confirmed its guidance for the current year.

Shares in Apple enjoyed a day in the green, after reporting it has acquired Workflow – a popular mobile app for automating tasks. Apples’ shares were up 0.2% on the news.

Automobiles and oil in the red

Shares in Ford Motor fell 1% in early trade after the company’s first-quarter guidance came in lower than Wall Street expectations.  The company said it would be less profitable in 2017 on a pre-tax basis, compared with a year earlier.

Elsewhere, oil prices moved lower for a third consecutive session, as traders focused on the persistent oversupply of crude in the global market. Crude oil was trading at $47.80 a barrel, down 0.5%.

This article was issued by Rebecca Naudi, Trader at Calamatta Cuschieri. For more information visit, www.cc.com.mt. The information, view and opinions provided in this article is being provided solely for educational and informational purposes and should not be construed as investment advice, advice concerning particular investments or investment decisions, or tax or legal advice. Calamatta Cuschieri Investment Services Ltd has not verified and consequently neither warrants the accuracy nor the veracity of any information, views or opinions appearing on this website.

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