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Showing content with the highest reputation since 04/07/19 in Blog Entries

  1. 2 points
    We've released options for the Volatility Index. You can find them on our platform under the options tab> Indices. Options, when buying the call/ put, are a great way to get involved in market movement whilst having limited risk. Dealing hours : 09:00:00 – 21:15:00 GMT Monday-Friday Contracts offered : Currently offer the next two months (November and December) Expiry for monthly options : Every 3rd Wednesday of the month Last trade : 21:15 GMT the day before expiry Settlement : Settled basis the Special Opening Quotation (SOQ) of VIX calculated by the opening prices of the SPX constituents used to calculate the VIX index on settlement date If you need any clarification on how options work, contact me through the community or give our help desk a call.
  2. 2 points
    If you like to change between different intervals on the IG desktop charts (from 1 minute candlesticks to 5 or 10 minute candles, or to hours, days or months) then we've just made it easier with keyboard shortcuts. Whilst on a chart you can type any number from 1 to 5 on your keyboard to bring up a small 'interval' dialogue box, confirm your choice, and hit enter. For example: 1 minute intervals: type 1 then enter 5 minute intervals: type 5 then enter 1 hour intervals: type 1 h then enter 2 hour intervals: type 2 h then enter 1 week intervals: type 1 w then enter See crosshair data on future dates You can now place your cursor/crosshair on a future date and see the level and time/date where you are positioned. Whilst this is a very minor update which could be seen as a trivial feature, it can become quite handy if you're looking at a trend and want to know exact levels and the time they will be reached. Simply position your cursor in the future and you’ll see the corresponding information straight away. If you have any questions or feedback on this, please feel free to share in the Comment section below.
  3. 2 points
    In a similar manner to our position preview feature you can now see your working order shaping up on the charts as you start creating orders from the ticket. Simply input your order direction, size and level and you will be able to see a preview on the chart. You can then decide to drag you Stop and/or Limit from the chart to define their absolute level and see the related Risk/Reward Ratio. Once you are happy with this just place your order from the ticket et voila! If you have any comments, feedback, or questions on this please add your thoughts to the comment section below. Client feedback is a driving force behind platform improvements and all suggestions are forwarded to the appropriate project management and product ownership teams. NB: You will need to make sure 'position preview' is on - you can toggle this by right clicking on the charts and navigating to 'show'.
  4. 1 point
    Chris Beauchamp’s insight A shortened week for the US due to the Independence Day holiday sees non-farm payrolls published a day early coinciding with the trade balance and weekly jobless claims figures. Other key events of note include PMIs from China and first quarter figures from Sainsbury’s. Economic reports Company announcements Dividends Upcoming FTSE 100: Coca-Cola HBC, Homeserve, National Grid FTSE 250: Murray Int’l, ICG, Airtel, Workspace, Primary Health Properties Dividends are applied after the close of the previous day’s session for each market. So, for example, the FTSE 100 goes ex-dividend on a Thursday, but the adjustment is applied at the close of the previous day e.g. Wednesday. The table below shows the days in which the adjustment is applied, not the ex-dividend days. To find the full index dividend adjustments for this week please go to:
  5. 1 point
    Volatility reminder and extended weekend closure Due to ongoing volatility, there is significant risk that markets may gap when they re-open on Sunday night. Please ensure that you’re comfortable with the size of your positions heading into the weekend, and also be aware that we may see circuit-breakers applied over the coming days – see below. We urge you to do the following: • Monitor your positions closely at all times • Ensure you are comfortable with the size of your positions, and the effect that any market gap may have on them • Ensure you have sufficient funds on your account to cover your positions in the event of a significant market move You can also use our weekend markets to hedge against risk on your weekday positions. Please note, however, that there will be a delayed open on our cryptocurrency and weekend markets on Saturday 14 March, to allow for scheduled maintenance which should improve platform stability. These markets are planned to reopen at 8am (UK time), rather than the normal 4am. We’re sorry if this causes you any inconvenience. Circuit-breakers may affect your trades At times of high volatility, regulated central exchanges may suspend trading on one side of the underlying market (an event known as a circuit-breaker). This happened to the Dow Jones Industrial Average this week, for example. IG follows suit whenever a circuit-breaker occurs. Circuit-breakers aim to restrict trading in order to avert market crashes or spikes. The restrictions are called ‘up limits’ or ‘down limits’, depending on the direction that the market has moved. As trading is suspended in the underlying market, it will impact how you trade with us. • An up limit is the maximum amount that the price of a stock index or commodity futures contract will be allowed to increase in a single trading session. If hit, it means that buying will be suspended in the underlying market. • A down limit is the opposite to an up limit – it sets the maximum amount that the price of a stock index or commodity futures contract will be allowed to decrease in a single trading session. If breached, it means that selling will be suspended in the underlying market. If you want more information on up limit and down limit you can find that here: https://www.ig.com/uk/glossary-trading-terms/limit-up--limit-down-definition At IG, when a down limit has occurred, you will only be able to buy – whether to open or close a position – through phone dealing. However, please be aware that the price may be significantly lower when the market re-opens.
  6. 1 point
    Trade ByteDance (TikTok) ahead of its IPO, with the IG grey market By taking a position on a grey market, you’re taking a position on a company’s potential market cap ahead of its initial public offering (IPO). The price of a grey market is a prediction of what the company’s total market capitalisation will be at the end of its first trading day. If you think the estimated value of the company is over- or under-priced, a grey market enables you to take advantage of this disparity before the shares are released publicly on the stock exchange. Why are traders interested in grey market stocks? Traders are interested in grey market stocks because it can be a way of taking advantage of movements in the company’s share price before it has actually listed. Also, any activity is usually taken as an indicator for the direction the stock price will take once it has listed. The pre-market price can be used to gauge the demand for the shares. How to trade grey market stocks. Grey market stocks are traded over-the-counter (OTC), which means that they are not offered by a stock exchange, but only by brokers and trading providers. By taking a position on a grey market stock, you’re taking a position on a company’s potential market capitalisation ahead of its IPO. If you think that the company will be worth more than the price indicated, you can buy the market. If you think that the price is an overvaluation, you can sell. When it comes to settling your trade, this can only be done once official trading of the share has begun. IG calculates the settlement price based on the official closing price of stock on after first day of trading, as reported by Bloomberg. Where to find the grey market on the platform You can find this grey market on the platform by selecting Popular Markets> ByteDance (TikTok) IPO Market Cap (US$Bn) Let me know if you have any questions about this!
  7. 1 point
    During the US Thanksgiving holiday, we will be making some changes to our usual trading hours. These adjustments will take place between Wednesday 27 November and Friday 29 November 2019, after which we’ll go back to normal trading hours. (All times below are GMT). Wednesday 27 November Usual closing times on US markets, US equities post-market open as normal. Thursday 28 November US equity markets will be closed. US index futures close early at 6pm. We will make an out-of-hours price on Wall Street, US 500 and US Tech 100 until futures re-open at 11pm. The Volatility Index closes early at 4.30pm. US Crude closes at 6pm, Brent Crude closes at 6.30pm. The US 30-Day Fed Funds Rate and the US Dollar Basket close at 6pm. Metals, including Gold and Silver, close at 6pm. US soft commodities will be closed. London Sugar No.5 closes early at 5pm. Friday 29 November US equity markets will close early at 6pm. There will be no pre or post-market trading. US index futures and the Volatility Index will close early at 6.15pm. We will make an out-of-hours price on Wall Street, US 500 and US Tech 100 until 9pm. US Crude closes at 6.45pm, Brent Crude closes at 7pm. The US 30-Day Fed Funds Rate and the US Dollar Basket close at 6.15pm. Metals, including Gold and Silver, close at 6.45pm. Cotton opens late at 1pm. Chicago Wheat opens late at 2.30pm. US soft commodities (except New York No.11 Sugar) will close early at 6pm. Lumber trades 3-6pm, Live Cattle trades 2-6.15pm. The futures desk and all 24-hour indices close at 9pm, FX closes at 10pm. Let me know if you need clarification on this.
  8. 1 point
    Do you have an interest in building long-term wealth through investing? Have you always wanted the chance to ask an expert a specific question about portfolio management, or find out more about IG's and BlackRock's trading strategy for our Smart Portfolios? We are giving you the opportunity to ask your questions directly to our Portfolio Managers here at IG. You can be part of a new article series here at IG called 'Ask the Portfolio Manager' by simply commenting your question below. What is this article all about? We are creating a new article series where the content is driven solely by your questions. Once we have collected your questions we will get them answered by one of our Portfolio Managers. We will then post the article on the IG Investments site and here on the IG Community also. You can ask us anything, but to give you some inspiration questions can be on: IG Smart Portfolios Investing strategies Macroeconomic events/news Product questions Questions on understanding a certain topic/strategy More general questions on IG or the Portfolio manager's themselves So, to get involved just post your question below - even if you don't have an account with IG you can create an account on the community and post a question! Who are IG's Portfolio Managers? Sam Dickens, Portfolio Manager, IG Smart Portfolios: Sam joined IG in 2014 and has worked as a portfolio manager for IG Smart Portfolios, our online wealth management platform, since its launch in February 2017. He has a degree in Economics and has previously worked at Capital Economics - a leading independent macroeconomic research company. He also holds the Investment Management Certificate qualification (IMC) and has passed CFA Level 1. George Bear, Assistant Portfolio Manager, IG Smart Portfolios: George joined IG on the graduate scheme in 2018 and has just recently joined the Smart Portfolio team as an Assistant Portfolio Manager. Prior to his recent move, George worked on the trading floor at IG, as a Sales Trader, and on our premium accounts relationship management team. He is a CFA Level 1 candidate and has a degree in Business with Economics.
  9. 1 point
    Market Conditions in Data Overload Markets often struggle for traction when there is a lack of a clear motivator such as meaningful event risk or an evolving systemically important theme. On the other hand, there are times when a surfeit of important events, indicators and headlines overwhelm the clear speculative picture, leaving us with an abundance of volatility without the benefit of a reliable course. We have dallied with this latter scenario these past weeks, but the constant redirection of our attention will be in special form in the week ahead. There is a near constant run of high-importance events scheduled for release moving through the next five days of active trade. What’s more, many of these various measures will tap into the top level themes that have stood as the undercurrent for economic and financial conditions for months, if not years. For trade wars, much of the critical development rests in the hands of a few officials who are weighing policy decisions that could significantly alter the course of the global economy. Washington and Beijing continue to negotiate after verbally agreeing to a ‘phase one’ deal back on October 11th but the details and sign off are still vague. The EU meanwhile is weighing whether to retaliate against the United States for the Trump Administration using the WTO ruling of a $7.5 billion ‘allowance’ for tariffs to recoup losses owing to unfair Airbus subsidies with a 25 percent tax on imported European agricultural goods. Meanwhile, data like the US trade balance and Chinese industrial profits figures on Monday will build upon trade-dependent earnings from the likes of AMD, United Steel and Alibaba. More tracked out for the timing of its updates is the wave of monetary policy updates we are due over a particular 48 hours period. There are a number of supportive updates such as the October US NFPs due Friday, but five central bank decisions between Wednesday and Thursday will make for a far more incisive view of our financial system. In chronological order, we are due the Bank of Canada; Federal Reserve; Brazilian Central Bank; Bank of Japan and Hong Kong Central Bank. Stacking these events so closely together will cater to the relative comparison of the currencies and their assets, but it may also stir further collective discussion of the distortion and costs associated to the extreme easing. The fundamental theme that will pack the most obvious punch in my view is the run of official (government-derived) GDP updates on tap. The United States is the world’s largest economy, so its Wednesday release will draw particular scrutiny. The Eurozone, French and Italian figures will be similarly important - particularly given the chatter about recession risks and the added pressure of external pressures like Brexit and the US tariffs. Two additional updates that are worthy of reflection for the big picture is the health reports for Mexico and Hong Kong. These are two large economies that stand on the cusp of the developed/emerging market designation with particular exposure to trade wars. This data can potential thaw fears of recession that have hardened over the past year behind data and increasingly complicated diplomatic situations, but the potential definitely skews the opposite direction. If this run of data reinforces the reality of economic struggle, it will serve as another cut to a speculative reach that seems divorced from fundamentals that are traditionally assumed to reflect value. In general, all of the thematic risk represents a greater role of risk rather than relief. Redressing the Limitations and Costs of Extreme Monetary Policy as Fed Arrives With the world’s largest central bank and its most dovish both on tap for this week, it is important to consider what is driving these groups to loosen navigate into uncharted dovish waters rather than just go along for the ride by trading relative yield advantages in FX or capitalizing on a familiar speculative equation that suggests more external support buys more lift from favorite capital market benchmarks. There is little denying the years of connection between the amount of accommodation (low interest rates, negative interest rates and quantitative easing programs) and the enthusiasm from the investing masses. This is a relationship forged originally in ‘monetary policy in capital markets’ textbooks, but the connections have grown more than skewed in the latter years of this extended cycle of easing. First and foremost, the overriding intent of monetary policy to foster economic health have been proven to be lacking. It could be argued that the dovish shift after the 2008 Great Financial Crisis / Great Recession stemmed the bleeding. Yet, the exceptional support has only grown over the years and we find ourselves on the cusp of another economic stall. This is a feature of the landscape for most of the major groups, but it is perhaps a lesson that should have been learned earlier through the Bank of Japan’s own experiences. The central bank has failed to return inflation to its target for any period of consistency for decades – not just years. So, though it is not considered one of the most prescient groups for a global overview, there is much to learn here. Though an inability to reach their principal economic objectives is a significant problem in itself, it may not be the straw that ultimately breaks the camel’s back. That is more likely to be the consequences to come out of the financial market influences from these extraordinary measures. Though it may not be their intent, the central banks’ easing has inflated capital markets substantially. The pressure is not even, but we have seen risky assets hit record highs at various points with different levels of excessive price to value. Few places is the extravagance more evident than with the US equity indices. At record highs, we should consider that the equity market is pricing in perfection for growth, earnings and returns. It is not very controversial to say that is not the case now. Far from it. Stimulus and low rates has not improved circumstances that remarkably rather the lack of significant return and a tepid economic environment has left investors starved for opportunities that can provide substantial growth at a reasonable risk. And so, they accept greater and greater risk to make ‘ends meat’. Propping capital markets higher may seem a net benefit in the absence of genuine growth, but there are serious risks associated to this state. Expectations for more support will grow exponentially with time. Capital distribution outside of the healthy business cycle will encourage funds to underperforming or zombie businesses that will further weaken economies. And, the growing disparity will inevitably lead to a point at which recognition of risks will force an acceleration of deleveraging which will manifest as a financial crisis that more readily turns into an economic crisis. This troubled state is growing increasingly apparent to investors and business owners, but now the concern seems to be permeating the central banks themselves. Outgoing ECB President Draghi admitted concern late in his tenure, though not as loudly and directly as some of the more hawkish members of his board who will remain with Lagarde at the helm. Some of the Fed officials have stated concern along these lines as well, but the group is not yet as overextended as most of its counterparts. In previous years, the US group’s tightening was viewed as a sign of optimism around the potential of self-generated growth. That perspective may hold as the circumstances change. If the Fed seems forced to loosen the reigns to match the ECB or BOJ, it may not be interpreted as a uniform source of speculative liquidity but rather admission that all economic traction has been lost. It is not wise to cheer negative rates and QE. A Brexit Solution Seemed So Close Less than two weeks ago, a breakthrough between the UK and EU teams in their negotiations for a quickly approaching Brexit cutoff date seemed to have changed the dynamic of an impending crisis. With Prime Minister Boris Johnson repeatedly stating the Article 50 extension date of October 31st would be held to ‘one way or the other’, there has been an understandable intensity by all those involved to find a compromise to avoid an economically-painful ‘no deal’ outcome. As such, the concessions found between the UK government and European representatives to form a Withdrawal Agreement Bill seemed the most important hurdle to overcome and sentiment understandably swelled after the developments. Yet, that optimism has significantly deflated this past week. First, it was the previous weekend’s extraordinary Saturday Parliamentary session which delayed the Government’s implementation of the deal which started the decline in ambitious optimism. Tuesday’s ‘second reading’ further delivered PM Johnson a blow when he was outright rejected on pushing forward to meet the short time frame. What was more remarkable to me than the familiar trouble to find an agreement exit from such disconnected parties was the Sterling’s ability to hold onto the gains of the previous weeks – prompting GBPUSD to an incredible 6.5 percent rally in in just a few weeks. Trading not far from multi-decade lows, it may not seem that difficult for the Cable to hold some of its recent buoyancy even if progress seems to have dangerously stalled. Yet, the real fair value question is to be found in the array of possible outcomes and their market influence. A divorce with no terms is still a serious probability and its economic and financial impact is not likely priced in even after the slide of the past three years. An extension is nevertheless a greater probability than a cliff on Thursday evening. That said, we are inviting more complication and additional cutoff dates while maintaining the same mix of impasses. Prime Minister Johnson, frustrated by the lack of progress, called for a snap election for December 12th this past week. That request will be considered in Parliament Monday. Presently, polls suggest conservatives could gain support but it is not clear if he will be granted his wish. Further a complication is the EU’s allowance for an extension. The PM sent a request for an extension to January 31st according to the Benn Act back on October 19th , and to this point no reply has been given. France is reportedly skeptical of giving the disgruntled country so much additional time without clarity on what they will actually do with it. Uncertainty is having tangible economic impact, and the discount is increasingly permanent even if the next steps are still fluid. So, this week, we will have to find out what Parliament will agree to concerning the election on Monday and the EU will have to grant an extension before the deadline on Thursday night. Mind your UK/Sterling exposure.
  10. 1 point
    We're happy to announce that both Bollinger %B and Bollinger Bandwidth are now available to use on the web platform and mobile app. Bollinger %B Bollinger %B indicator helps you work out where price is in relation to the upper and lower Bollinger Bands. This shows a reading of 1 if the price is trading at the upper band, or 0 if it's at the lower band. Bollinger %B allows you to take readings of divergences that often precede market reversals: A bearish divergence occurs when there are lower highs in %B during an uptrend in price (higher highs) A bullish divergence occurs when there are higher lows in %B during a downtrend in price (lower lows) Bollinger Bandwidth The Bollinger Bandwidth gives a reading on the distance between the upper and lower Bollinger Bands: A low reading could be a sign that volatility is about to rise. Low volatility is often seen as a precursor to a spike in price. You can use the tool in a highly trending market. A fall in volatility is often seen when markets are consolidating, or momentum is building for the next move. A reversal in the direction of the bandwidth can be a sign of a market reversal, as it could mean a recent surge or slump in price is losing momentum
  11. 1 point
    A trading forum and help and support network for IG clients The new IG Community has been live for a few weeks now and I just wanted to update all Community members on a couple of things, including a showcase of a brand new promotional video. This should be useful for those who haven't used Community before but what to know more - it's well worth a watch. If you have any comments or questions regarding the new forum please let us know in the Comments section below. We're always looking to improve our offering based on what traders want - so give us a shout! New features this month Guests can now post without necessarily needing to be logged into Community. We want to make sure that all content is still relevant and interesting, so all guest posts will have to be approved by a moderator before being publicly visible. We want to make sure that quality over quantity remains, however the recent trial seems to have gone well and the Community is getting more relevant posts to add to discussion. If anyone has any opinion on this we'd love to hear from you so please feel free to add a comment below. We recently had a trial of the new 'poll' feature on a post relating to new cryptocurrencies. You can read that article on which crypto your most interested in here. Currently only moderators can post polls, however if you as a client would like to have this function, let us know! We're interested in who would use it. We're now in the top navigation bar on IG.com - it may not sound like a big change, but it allows you to get to the forum very quickly from anywhere on the IG.com environment (look for the global black navigation bar at the top). We're also looking at inclusion in MyIG - that should be live shortly. Finally, we have some stats for you which you may find interesting. What is IG Community? This purpose of this forum is for like-minded clients to share trade ideas and discuss market opportunities, ask questions, and provide help and support to others. Learn strategies and trade ideas from experienced traders Give tips to the Community and share your market knowledge Perfect your trading by discussing ideas with others Get the most out of IG and ask the Community anything regarding trading or IG Anyone can browse the trading forum, but you will need to have an IG account to post or interact on Community and have your content published immediately. If you're new to the forumand looking for a first step maybe check out the forum, or have a once over of our Community tutorials. We migrated the old forum (and added some new features) We have migrated over all the posts, likes, 'kudos' and private messages from the previous version of the forum, as well as integrated the Community login with the wider IG eco system so you can enjoy a seamless digital experience between the trading platform and forum. You should be able to see all your previously posted content under the same Community username as you originally had on the previous iteration. New content areas... Blogs: We have three blogs which we will be updated periodically. Market News - Daily morning briefings, index dividend adjustments, and one off articles IG Product Updates - A place to let you know about all the things we roll out IG Community Blog - Competitions, 'Ask the Expert' series, and Community updates ...and a few new features. Activity streams: If you're logged in you'll notice you can easily browse things such as 'unread' or 'followed' content. You can save individual search streams so they're available for the next time you log in Advanced search: An updated and intuitive search functionality Leaderboard: The Leaderboard keeps track of the hottest content and best users each day based on reputation received. You'll increase your chances of getting on here if you post more, receive more likes, and help others Community Profile: Your space in Community. Check yours out by clicking on your username in the top right hand corner (logged in users only). Access IG Community - anytime, anywhere IG Community will be up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The easiest way to access IG Community is using the top right hand 'Help' drop down in the dealing platform, but you can also access via our mobile apps (look under the help and support section - try it now), or by simply going to community.ig.com. What do you like? What would you change if you had the chance? What new areas would you like to see? Let us know using the comments section below. Happy chatting IG Community Moderator Team
  12. 1 point
    Heikin-Ashi candles are now available on the IG trading platform for both desktop and mobile. This feature has been one of the more highly requested additions to charts as these types of candles are commonly used by traders looking at identifying trends visually without the need of complex analysis. How can I see Heikin-Ashi candles on the IG dealing platform? Turning on Heikin-Ashi candles is simple. If you want to see these candles; Simply open the main menu by right clicking on the charts Navigate to “Types” and bring up the second menu list Select “Heikin-Ashi” - the candles will appear straight away How are Heikin-Ashi candles different from regular HLOC candles? You can read more about what Heikin-Ashi candlestick are on IG.com, but to see a simple visual on the difference and how these could be used for identifying possible trends, just check out the charts below. Both charts are the same time fame on the same asset, one with regular candles and the other with Heikin-Ashi candles. Pic 1: regular candles (and the visual of how to turn H-A candles on) Pic 2: Heikin-Ashi candles
  13. 1 point
    ECB Didn’t Live Up to Lofty Speculation, Will the Fed? There is a span of high-level rate decisions this coming week, but only one of these updates carries serious potential to not only move its domestic assets but further potential to generate reaction from the entire financial system: the FOMC. This past week, the European Central Bank offered us a look into how far the dovish reach of the largest central banks is currently stretching. Against heavy speculation that the group was going to clearly lay out the runway to further rate cuts and escalation of unorthodox policy, they instead offered a more reserved view of their plans. Fending off an approximate 40 percent probability of another 10 basis point rate cut, the ECB held rates and offered up language that said they expect to keep rates at their current level “or lower” through the first half of 2020. On a full swing back into stimulus – versus the half measure of the TLTRO – President Draghi said they were looking into options. There is complication in the ECB pushing ahead with further accommodation as new leadership is coming in a couple months. This seems to concern them more than the risks that their increasingly extreme measures risk degrading the efficacy of monetary policy all together, particularly risky in the event that we face another global slowdown or financial crisis. The swell in European investor fears about the prospects for the future may be soothed by an outside wind if it proves timely and fully supportive. According to the market, the Federal Reserve is certain to hike rates at its meeting on Wednesday. Fed Funds futures are forecasting a 100 percent change of a 25 basis point (bp) cut and is reaching further to an approximate 25 percent probability of a 50 bp move. That is unlikely. Under scrutiny from the President and the markets, the Fed is attempting to signal its consistency as it works to reinsure its credibility. In the June Summary of Economic Projections (SEP), the median forecast on yields was for no change to the benchmark this year. A 25 bp cut at this meeting would not deviate too far from their assessment as the dot plot showed at least 8 members expected at least one 25bp cut (1 anticipated two), so it was a close sway in majority. That said, 50 bp against a backdrop of data that has performed well and equity markets are records would send the wrong signal: either one of hostage to fear of volatility or a sense of panic that they are not sharing about the future. How much is the markets banking on the Fed to converge with its much lower yielding counterparts? That answer will likely spell how much volatility we should expect. Donald Trump Throws a Curve Ball on Trade Wars Fear over trade wars had receded recently as confusion seemed to replace the tangible pain of tactical threats. Between the US and China, headlines were more about the next round of talks that were being conducted at a high level in China while trouble over the status of Huawei and the retaliation that could bring was fading out of the news cycle. We almost cleared the week with a ‘no news is good news’ perspective when President Trump decided to weigh in on something the market had long suspected was a strategy but presumed would never be made certain by officials. In offhand remarks that suggest he does not appreciate the fear that can be easily sparked in speculative markets, Trump said China may not agree to any trade deal until after the Presidential elections in November 2020. That may very well be China’s strategy: wait it out until a more amenable administration potentially takes over. That said, the Chinese economy has already taken a significant blow from the standoff thus far. It is unlikely they would want to keep it up that long on the chance of turnover. This may also reflect a Trump administration tactic: refuse to compromise out to the election and use it as a campaign point that no other government would be able to close the deal. Either way, this is a concerning musing. And, in the meantime, don’t forget that there is pressure building up on other fronts. For the United States, the question of open trade war with Europe seems to be graining tangibility with the theorizing of explicit moves from both sides for a variety of perceived infringements including the Airbus-Boeing spat. The most costly threat though remains the potential that the US is considering a blanket 25 percent tariff on all autos and auto parts which could encompass many countries but carry the most pain for Germany, Japan and South Korea. Speaking of those latter two, there is an Asia-specific trade war burgeoning between Japan and South Korea with the former threatening the supply materials necessary for the latter to produce computer chips. And, though it isn’t often considered a ‘trade war’ front, the UK-EU divorce carries with it clear trade disruption implications that will compound a global figure in collective trade. Another Verse in Milestone Towards Currency Wars Most business leaders and financiers publicly project a confidence that the world faces little or no risk that a currency war could erupt between the largest economies in the world. Privately, they are very likely worrying over the pressure building up behind active measures to devalue currencies and setting off a chain reaction of financial instability. It isn’t a stretch to suggest certain major currencies are artificially deflated, but most instances are not this way intentionally (for the purpose of economic advantage over global counterparts) or have been implemented recently. The ECB deflated the Euro with direct threats of monetary policy back in 2014 when EURUSD was pressuring 1.4000. Japanese officials slipped up before that when they suggested they are pursuing their open-ended QE program in an effort to drive their currency lower to afford a trade advantage. They later back-tracked and now simply say their ceaseless JGB purchases are a bid to restart inflation, which has floundered for three decades. The Swiss Franc is faced with constant intervention threat by the SNB, but their efforts are tied to the Euro and ECB’s overwhelming stimulus drive. In most instances around the world, policy officials are attempting to account for missing their stated policy goals (such as inflation) or offset external pressures that are themselves the results of a collective unorthodox policy epoch. However, in this desperation, there is increasingly an assumption of malicious intent from trade partners. President Trump is certainly suspicious of global counterparts. He reiterated his concerns this past week in something of a different light. Seemingly facing pressure by advisers for his frequent lamenting of the strong Dollar being interpreted as a ‘weak Dollar’ policy, the President said the Greenback is still the currency of choice – which he supports – while the Euro wasn’t doing well and the Yuan was ‘very weak’. That still looks like intent. What is troubling were the reports that trade adviser – and noted extreme China hawk – Peter Navarro had presented a range of ideas to possibly devalue the Dollar to the administration. They rejected the ideas, but the fact that this is taking place at all certainly raises the threat level of a currency war extremely high.
  14. 0 points
    Changes to margin this weekend We will be increasing a range of minimum margin rates on new positions only going into the weekend, as per the below. No impact for retails traders or markets where minimums are already higher and no changes to any existing positions. Indices to 5% at 16:00 GMT FX/Gold to 3% at 16:00 GMT Oil (energies) to 15% at 16:00 GMT We will revert to lower margins rates on Sunday with minimum rates of 1% Indices/FX and 5% Oil. Once again these changes will be dependent on market conditions over the weekend. As mentioned in our last volatility reminder Due to ongoing volatility, there is significant risk that markets may gap when they re-open on Sunday night. Please ensure that you’re comfortable with the size of your positions heading into the weekend, and also be aware that we may see circuit-breakers applied over the coming days – see below. We urge you to do the following: • Monitor your positions closely at all times • Ensure you are comfortable with the size of your positions, and the effect that any market gap may have on them • Ensure you have sufficient funds on your account to cover your positions in the event of a significant market move You can also use our weekend markets to hedge against risk on your weekday positions.
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    Easter Trading Hours We wanted to let you know about some changes to our trading hours over the upcoming Easter period (all in UK time): Thursday 9 April Most 24-hour indices close at 10pm.* Friday 10 April All European and US markets closed. FX closes at 10pm. Saturday 11 April Weekend indices and cryptocurrencies open as normal. Sunday 12 April Weekend indices and cryptos open as normal. FX opens at 9pm. US and 24-hour indices quoted from 11pm. Monday 13 April European equities closed. European 24-hour indices quoted out of hours. US markets open. Tuesday 14 April European markets reopen. *Japan 225, Singapore Blue Chip and China A50 will re-open on Friday 10 April. For more information on our popular markets' trading hours over the coming holiday, see our full list of Easter trading hours click here.
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