Global Market Report - March 15, 2018

World markets were generally higher despite ongoing fears over a trade war and the diplomatic crisis involving the UK and Russia

James Gard 15 March, 2018 | 10:59AM
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Another weaker close on Wall Street should have set Asia-Pacific markets on a similar trajectory, but equities managed minor gains on Thursday. Japan’s Nikkei and Topix indices recovered from early weakness to end the day in positive territory. But a recovery in the yen against the dollar curbed the country’s stock market gains. China and Hong Kong benchmarks were among the better performing in the region in percentage terms.


Thursday was the usual active day for corporate news in London, played out amid the tense backdrop of worsening UK-Russian relations. Upmarket estate agent Savills (SVS) bucked the gloom currently surrounding the UK property market with an increase in profit and revenue. The chief executive, Jeremy Helsby, did strike a more cautious note for 2018 transaction volumes, however.

Unilever (ULVR)’s decision to move its corporate headquarters to Rotterdam was not affected by the Brexit vote, the company insisted, but the move was still interpreted in political terms in the media. The company will still have listings in the UK, Netherlands and US. The shares were off over 1% to £37.44 on Thursday morning.

The FTSE 100 and Germany’s Dax were marginally higher as the dollar firmed against the pound and the euro.  

North America

US stock markets are expected to shrug off fears over a global trade war and open higher on Thursday, according to the latest futures.

In economics, weekly jobless claims will be in view, as well as the Philadelphia Federal Reserve’s business outlook survey. Tomorrow sees the release of the University of Michigan sentiment index for March.

Adobe (ADBE) reports after the market closes, while Broadcom (AVGO) – recently scuppered by the President in its pursuit of Qualcomm (QCOM) – reports numbers after the market closes.

Next week’s Federal Reserve meeting is expected to see the first interest rate rise of the year and one of a sequence in 2018. Economists and analysts currently expect up to four rate hikes this year.

The information contained within is for educational and informational purposes ONLY. It is not intended nor should it be considered an invitation or inducement to buy or sell a security or securities noted within nor should it be viewed as a communication intended to persuade or incite you to buy or sell security or securities noted within. Any commentary provided is the opinion of the author and should not be considered a personalised recommendation. The information contained within should not be a person's sole basis for making an investment decision. Please contact your financial professional before making an investment decision.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar
Adobe Inc405.91 USD1.71Rating
Broadcom Inc526.49 USD-3.07Rating
Qualcomm Inc132.00 USD0.30Rating
Savills PLC1,089.22 GBX2.08
Unilever PLC3,531.50 GBX0.43Rating

About Author

James Gard  is content editor for