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BANK OF ENGLAND ADDS £100BN TO BOND BUYING PROGRAMME

  • BANK OF ENGLAND ADDS £100BN TO BOND BUYING PROGRAMME

    BANK OF ENGLAND ADDS £100BN TO BOND BUYING PROGRAMME

    Data Sourced from FE Analytics, and Bloomberg Finance LP

    BANK OF ENGLAND ADDS £100BN TO BOND BUYING PROGRAMME

    This week there has been a big focus on debt, with government borrowing reaching extreme levels and the Bank of England boosting its bond purchase programme. Government debt to GDP breached 100 per cent for the first time in nearly 60 years but it really needs to be put in context. Government spending might be up but spending by everyone is else is considerably down, so it is unlikely to have the inflationary impact predicted. With investors still willing to lend to government at near zero interest rates, it looks like there is a lot of room for the chancellor to manoeuvre.

    Elsewhere, in the US there are rising Covid-19 infection rates in Texas, Arizona, Florida and Oklahoma; all states that eased their lockdown restrictions early suggesting the US maybe entering its second wave. With Donald Trump scheduled to hold an election rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, later this month it is a reminder that the virus is likely to play a major part in the election campaign – not just in speeches but possibly in voting patterns, turnout and even polling day.

    UK: UNEMPLOYMENT TICKS UP AS INFLATION FALLS AGAIN

    UK inflation fell to 0.5 per cent in May as the sharp drop in consumer spending on leisure and recreation, as well as petrol and diesel, continues to cause the rate to fall. Although May saw a month on month increase of 12 per cent in retail sales they remain 13 per cent below their pre-coronavirus levels.

    The UK jobs market has been resilient in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. The unemployment rate for the three months to April was 3.9 per cent – up just 0.1 percentage points on the previous year. The government’s job protection schemes appear to be working as ONS figures show around 6 million more people are temporarily off work. However, the data shows a sharp drop in the number of self-employed – the section of the workforce which has seen the least government support. The three months to April also saw the first drop in average earnings in two years as many workers have seen their income drop due to the government’s furlough scheme.

    EQUITIES: UK GAMBLING STOCKS DEFY THE ODDS

    The return of live sport has given the UK’s bookmakers something to cheer about. This week has seen the resumption of live football in England and, although live horse racing restarted the beginning of the month, Royal Ascot has been underway this week – although without the crowds.

    Despite having no live sport except Belarussian football for three months, UK gaming stocks have fared surprisingly well during the coronavirus lockdown. GVC has outperformed the FTSE All Share in 2020 and is down around 10 per cent year to date. Over 12 months it is up 21 per cent. William Hill has seen a drop of just under 30 per cent in 2020, but has almost tripled its share price since the low of 23rd March and is down around 1.5 per cent over 12 months. The best performer has been Flutter Entertainment which has benefitted from a more diverse portfolio, which includes online casino gaming and online sports betting in the US. Flutter’s shares are up 23 per cent in 2020 and are up 92 per cent over 12 months.

    OIL: BP PREDICTS OIL PRICE WILL REMAIN SUBDUED IN THE LONG TERM

    The recovery in the price of oil received further support this week as the OPEC+ countries agreed to stick to the production cuts set in April. The price of Brent Crude has increased through May and June to stand at $42 a barrel, up from just under $20 at the end of April. Greater compliance with the production cuts, combined with a drop in output from the US shale producers and the gradual increase in demand as economies emerge from lockdown are also helping push the price up.

    However, the long-term outlook could remain subdued compared to the pre-coronavirus price. This week BP wrote off $17.5bn from the value of its oil and gas assets as it said its long-term projection for Brent Crude is $55 a barrel. This figures is an estimate out to 2050, as the company said demand would recover more slowly than expected and the coronavirus shutdown would speed up the adoption of cleaner energy.

    For more information regarding our weekly market reports, we encourage you to give us a call on 01732 746188 or send us an email at enquiries@foxgroveassociates.co.uk.

    This document has been prepared for general information only. It does not contain all of the information which an investor may require in order to make an investment decision. If you are unsure whether this is a suitable investment you should speak to your financial adviser. This information is not guaranteed to be correct, complete, or accurate. Financial Express Investments Ltd, registration number 03110696, is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 209967). For our full disclaimer please visit https://www.fefundinfo.com/en-gb/about/legal-and-policies/.

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