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08/04/24 Briefing

The FTSE 100 and major indices across Europe rose, as investors digested fresh data including Friday's US jobs report. Looking ahead, there are key data releases in the pipeline including the US CPI on Wednesday.

  • The FTSE 100 (^FTSE) was slightly lower in early trade before trading about 0.3% higher by the end of the trading day. Germany's DAX (^GDAXI) and France's CAC (^FCHI) each rose 0.7%.

  • The STOXX 600 (^STOXX), which tracks pan-European stocks, was up 0.4%.

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) and the S&P 500 (^GSPC) rose slightly. Contracts on the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) rose 0.3% by the end of the day in London.

  • US markets are looking to the release of the Consumer Price Index on Wednesday, a key input in the Fed's decision making and a clue to continuing resilience in the US economy. Investors will watch for signs that inflation returned to its downward trend in March after signs of stickiness in readingsearlier this year.

  • Meanwhile, gold (GC=F) prices continued their ascent, hitting fresh all-time highs of $2,350 an ounce in Asian trading hours. The increase was put down to buying by central banks such as the People's Bank of China and de-dolarisation.

  • The moves also come following more dire news for the UK high street. Mazars' new data on retail showed shop insolvencies jumped by 19% in the past year to 2,195 — a five-year high. The increase comes due to the fact that businesses have been hit by increased costs, cautious customers in a cost of living crisis and higher interest rates making financing more expensive.

  • High profile insolvencies in the past year included Wilko, Ted Baker and The Body Shop.

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