Week ending 30th August 2019.

After a disappointing end to last week (please see here) following an escalation in US/China trade tensions, global equity markets rallied strongly this week on hopes that there will be a truce thanks to positive comments from Donald Trump.

Speaking at the G7 summit, Donald Trump said the prospects for a US/China trade deal are better now than at any time since negotiations began.

In the UK, the pound weakened 0.8% against the US dollar, but strengthened 0.4% against the euro following Boris Johnson’s approval to suspend Parliament suggesting the market has, by and large, priced-in a no-deal Brexit.

However, agree with it or not, proroguing Parliament does appear to have helped, as yesterday (Thursday 29 August 2019) the Danish Prime Minister, Mette Frederiksen, said the EU should be “as flexible and positive as possible” in its negotiations in order to avoid a no-deal Brexit and it has also been announced that UK and EU officials will intensify talks to avoid a no-deal Brexit.  Additionally, it must be remembered a Brexit deal is also in the EU’s interests.  For example, the outlook for some of Germany’s key industries is already far from rosy, after several carmakers and parts suppliers including Daimler and Continental have recently issued profit warnings.

The main focal point for this week’s economic data will be Friday’s (6 September 2019) US employment data (non-farm payrolls; unemployment rate; participation rate; and average earnings).  Also on Friday, Jay Powell, the Fed Chairman will speak for the last time before the Fed’s ‘quiet period’ ahead of their next monetary policy meeting on 17 & 18 September – so we will be listening out for any hints on the timing and size of their next interest rate cut.

Additionally tomorrow (Saturday 31 August 2019) we have China’s PMI data.

Investment Management Team

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