Banks and Commodities Give UK’s FTSE a Lift

On Monday, London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index climbed, thanks to commodities and bank stocks in a trading session that was very choppy. This was after data showed that there was a slowdown in the industrial output in Britain, but there were tentative indications that price pressures were coming down from their peak.

Index rises

There was a 0.4% increase in the blue-chip FTSE 100 in the UK, as it managed to reverse its early losses. But, there was a 0.1% decline in the mid-cap FTSE 250 index that is domestically focused. There was a 2.0% advance in banks that tend to benefit in a higher interest rate environment.

They remained the top performers on the index, ahead of their earnings report and the policy meeting of the US Federal Reserve. A 2.1% gain was recorded in the miners, thanks to higher copper prices and a weakening US dollar that meant that buyers with other currencies could get metals for cheaper.

After recording losses early on, oil stocks Shell and BP managed to recover and gained by 1.4% and 0.9%, respectively. They got a boost because of weakness in the US dollar and worries about supply. The top performing sector for the year has been energy, which has recorded gains of almost 23%. This has helped the FTSE 100 outperform its European and US peers.

Uncertain future

However, it is important to note that the FTSE 100 index has become unsettled because of volatile oil prices. This is because traders believe that demand could fall amidst the increase in interest rates, while supply remains tight because of the loss of Russian oil.

Market analysts said that the FTSE 100 index had proven to be more resilient than others because it has a number of prominent international companies. These include some of the big gas and oil companies, along with the miners, all of which have made some big gains. However, they added that there is no guarantee that the rise can be sustained in the future.

Economic data showed that the industrial output in Britain had risen at its slowest pace in about a year and three months. However, there were indicators that there was an ease in some challenges around investment and inflation.

Other stocks

There was a 1.5% fall in leisure and travel stocks after Ryanair in Ireland said that it was not certain if they would be able to return to profitability levels before the pandemic, even though it managed to surpass estimates in the first quarter.

There was a 1.7% rise in SThree, after it posted a surge of 58% in its operating profit for half a year. This was because of strong hiring demand and as people are switching jobs because of a competitive market. A 5.0% advance was also recorded in Serica Energy after it turned down a merger proposal from Kistos, an energy investment company that had valued at 1.2 billion pounds. There was a 1.4% in Kistos.

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