Autonomy bucks the trend in style-Latest Market Analysis
Markets extended their significant sell-off this morning on continuing growth and funding fears. Despite an absence of any significant negative news-flow, the FTSE slipped back below the 5,000 level. Antonomy would have stood out on the best of days with more than a 70% jump, the software developer subject to an all cash offer from Hewlett-Packard for £25.50 per share. The acquisition news had a broader impact on the technology sector in general, with Sage Group and Arm Holdings adding 1.8% and 2.4% respectively by the end of the day. On the other side of the deal however, shareholders in HP were less enthused as their shares experienced more than a 20% fall in early US trade as investors questioned whether a sensible price was being paid for the British company.
Europe was boosted at the US open, America lifting from the lows implied by its futures and the Dow Jones initially off around 0.5%. The major European indices staged a comeback late in the day, purportedly as a result of traders covering short positions over the weekend. This was more a case of taking risk off the table whilst markets were closed, and not necessarily caused by a more buoyant outlook. This effective support did however waver in the last half an hour of trade, with the FTSE finishing down 51 points, or 1.0%, at 5041, having made brief inroads into positive territory less than an hour earlier.
The week saw the FTSE, CAC and DAX finish down 5.75%, 6.8% and 8.6% respectively. At a stock level, a notable underperformer was Barclay’s with a 20% decline over the week, despite many commentators being unable to ascertain why this stock in particular has suffered disproportionately.
Amid the turmoil, gold hit yet another record high but came off its peak of 1877.5 to around 1852 at the time of writing. The precious metal’s rise of close to 5% in the last 5 days highlights why many traders and investors will welcome a weekend of relief from the market turmoil.