Latest Market Analysis
Following a shaky start to the day, equity markets closed in fairly neutral territory, seemingly unable to convict fully to any direction ahead of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision and subsequent press conference later in the day. The FTSE 100 closed 2 points lower at 5773, and the flat performance was replicated across Europe and in early US trading.
In the UK , the minutes of the last Monetary Policy Committee meeting were published, which showed that the replacement for one of the three members calling for a rate rise the previous month had reversed his predecessors thinking and voted to keep them unchanged.
Surprisingly topping the FTSE 350 leader board were shares in Dixons Retail Group, after rival Kesa Electricals, the owner of Comet, announced it was conducting a strategic review of the business, which may include a sale or the closure of stores.
Both groups have been under pressure of late as household incomes have been squeezed and competition from supermarkets such as Tesco and Asda has been fierce. Shares in Dixons Retail closed 7.7% higher at 16.5p, despite electrical goods manufacturer Phillips also highlighting weak sales.
A bullish trading update from Hargreaves Services, which announced that full year results were expected to be in line with management expectations, saw shares in the Durham based group gain 2%, closing 20p higher at 1040p.
Elsewhere the pound continued its recent decline versus the dollar, whilst oil regained some lost ground with a 1.4% rise.
This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by John Dance .
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