- FTSE 100 closing price of 7,254.76, -0.3%
- Pub names rally as Sunak simplifies alcohol levies, cuts biz rates
- GBP edges lower after budget
- CAD strengthens as Bank of Canada brings QE to an end
- Oil holds losses after inventory build
- Bitcoin corrects below $60K, altcoins follow
By Samuel Indyk
Pub names were the main beneficiaries from the budget with J D Wetherspoon PLC (LON:JDW), Marston’s PLC (LON:MARS), and Mitchells & Butlers (LON:MAB) all near the top of the FTSE 250 and rallying over 5%.
Sunak announced plans to halve business rates for companies in the hospitality and leisure sector, while also scrapping the planned increase in duty on spirits, wine, cider, and beer. Sunak also announced a 5% reduction in the tax on drinks served from pumps, such as beer and cider.
GBP edged lower after the budget despite the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) upping its forecasts for economic growth. With details of the budget now clear, the focus will turn to next week’s interest rate decision from the Bank of England. The CME’s BoEWatch tool assigns a 62% probability of a rate hike next week.
One central bank that is also looking decidedly hawkish is the Bank of Canada. The central bank announced an end to its quantitative easing programme earlier than the market expected and brought its guidance for the first rate hike forward to the “middle quarters of 2022”.
CAD strengthened following the announcement with USD/CAD dropping to its lowest level since 21st October.
WTI and Brent crude futures were both trading lower following the latest inventory data from the Energy Information Administration. The EIA said stockpiles increased by 4.267 million barrels in the latest week versus expectations of a build of 1.914 million barrels. However, there remained another drawdown of supplies at the Cushing hub in Oklahoma, with supply declining by the largest since January. Crude stocks at the hub are now at their lowest level since October 2018.
Bitcoin was in focus with the world’s largest cryptocurrency dropping back below $60,000 to its lowest level since October 15th. There appeared to be little fundamental news behind the move with the price action likely more of a technical correction after the all-time highs last week. Other major cryptocurrencies, including Ethereum and Cardano, were nursing losses.
One crypto that bucked the trend was Shiba Inu which climbed over 33% amid hopes that the coin will be added to Robinhood’s platform. A petition to get the coin added has received over 330,000 signatures and the Robinhood (NASDAQ:HOOD) CEO signalled that new coins could be added to the trading platform, when he spoke on the analyst call following earnings.
MARKET WRAP: FTSE ends lower, Canada ends QE, Cryptos correct
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