Global Market Report - May 8, 2018

Asia and UK stocks were positive on Tuesday, but markets in mainland Europe struggled

James Gard 8 May, 2018 | 10:56AM
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Hong Kong was the best performing stock market in the Asia-Pacific region on Tuesday as its tech bias was given support by gains in the Nasdaq on Monday. The Hang Seng rose by over 400 points, or 1.36%, to break through 30,000 points, although this move was just a retest of late April levels. The record high for the index above 32,000 points was seen in January 2018 before the global correction.

There are plenty of geopolitical distractions to swing stock, currency, oil and bond markets this week, not least the uncertainty over the Iran nuclear deal. Nevertheless, Asia markets broadly tracked the US higher. Japan made minor gains at the yen remained stable at around 109 to the dollar, at around a three-month high for the US currency.

April figures for China exports and imports were both above forecasts. China’s long-term aim of reducing dependency on exports looked to be on track with news that imports were up over 20% year on year in April, while exports were up just under 13%, compared with a fall of 2.7% in March. China’s inflation data is in view on Thursday this week.


The UK’s main indices were higher this morning, helped by the upbeat tilt to global equities, and by domestic M&A: the FTSE 250 was led on Tuesday morning by Virgin Money (VM), which had received a preliminary approach from Yorkshire Bank (CYBG).

Pharmaceutical firm Shire (SHP) finally agreed to a £46 billion bid from Japan’s Takeda (4502) after rebuffing the suitor a number of times. Despite a rise in Shire’s shares, they are still trading £9 a share below the £49 a share price of the Takeda deal.

North America

US stock market futures are suggesting that shares will struggle to make progress at the open on Tuesday as a decision over the Iran deal looms. Crude oil markets have already hit a four-year high on fears of renewed sanctions on Iran and return to the country’s international isolation.

Today’s earnings calendar is very full, with reports due from Vonage (VG), Moneygram (MGI) and Walt Disney (DIS) – which is involved in the takeover battle for the UK’s Sky (SKY).



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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar
MoneyGram International Inc  
Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd4,434.00 JPY0.07Rating
The Walt Disney Co107.64 USD-0.03Rating

About Author

James Gard

James Gard  is senior editor for


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