MARKET WRAP: FTSE 100 rallies, Oil higher, Litecoin pumps and dumps

imageEconomy4 hours ago (Sep 13, 2021 16:33)

© Reuters.

Key Points

  • FTSE 100 closing price of 7,068.6, +0.56%
  • Energy names higher as oil rallies
  • WH Smith jumps as activist increases stake
  • USD higher, GBP mixed
  • Bitcoin falls further back
  • Litecoin pumps and dumps on fake Walmart story

By Samuel Indyk – The FTSE 100 began the week on a positive footing with energy names leading the way higher as oil prices rallied.

BP (LON:BP) and Royal Dutch Shell (LON:RDSa) were two of the best performing stocks in the blue-chip index as oil prices continued their recent run of gains. The latest report from the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) estimates that 48.56% of oil production in the Gulf of Mexico is shut-in in the wake of Hurricane Ida.

Worryingly, Tropical Storm Nicholas is now heading towards the Texas coast and is expected to make landfall later today, according to the NHC. The storm could add a further delay to production restarting.

With oil prices pushing higher, Tullow Oil (LON:TLW) and Harbour Energy (LON:HBR) both finished near the top of the mid-cap FTSE 250 index.

Another company near the top of the FTSE 250 was WH Smith (LON:SMWH) who rallied after the Guardian reported that activist investor Causeway Capital Management increased its stake to 9% following the recent downside. The newspaper reported that Causeway Capital was not intending to ouster management but was betting on a recovery in international travel.

The USD was mostly higher on Monday ahead of the all important US CPI data on Tuesday. Although the Fed have largely said that they have met their inflation goal, a higher than expected reading could lead to louder calls for the Fed to begin tapering from some of the more hawkish members.

GBP/USD slipped lower amid the stronger USD but it did gain against the EUR with EUR/GBP dropping as low as 0.8510 before bouncing. It’s a big week for UK data with labour market figures due on Tuesday, inflation metrics published on Wednesday and retail sales on Friday.

Bitcoin and other major cryptocurrencies traded lower but not did find some brief respite in the afternoon after a fake press release gave a lift to the sector.

A story published on Globe Newswire, a usually trustworthy source of news, stated that Walmart (NYSE:WMT) was to begin accepting Litecoin as payment on its e-commerce store from October 1st. Litecoin themselves tweeted the story but then deleted it, leading to speculation that the story may not be true.

In the meantime, Litecoin had jumped over 25% to its highest level since May 19th. The news lifted other major cryptocurrencies with Bitcoin turning green.

Walmart later denied the story and Litecoin pared all the gains and turned negative on the day.

The pump and dump scheme will likely draw increased attention from regulators, who are already looking at ways to protect investors from such scams.


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MARKET WRAP: FTSE 100 rallies, Oil higher, Litecoin pumps and dumps

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