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Top content from across the community, hand-picked by us.

German factory and PMI - EMEA brief 6 August
A mixed affair overnight saw Australian and Hong Kong stocks shrug off fears of a deepening trade war between the US and China, while Japanese and Chinese indices traded in the red at the end of the session. Rhetoric within the two sides stepped up once more, with China threatening a retaliatory set of tariffs on $60 billion of US exports. One of the key reasons for the strength in Australian indices was the gains we have seen in Iron Ore overnight, with the likes of BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto both enjoying a positive session. Asian equity markets are trading firmer this morning, although China's Shanghai Composite trades 1.3% lower and the Nikkei flat. In retaliation to Trump's tariff retorts, China has said that it is ready for a "protracted war" in the wake of what they believe to be unreasonable demands from the US.

Looking ahead, there are precious few economic events of note, with the German factory orders deterioration (-4% from 2.6%) already seen this morning providing one of the only releases of interest. Also keep an eye out for the Sentix investor confidence figure for the eurozone. A similar story for the US session, with a Canadian bank holiday adding to the calm of the day.
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Apple $1,000,000,000,000 - EMEA brief 3 August
Trade fears continue to dominate in Asia, with the Chinese markets leading the losses as markets prepare for a potential raft of tariffs on a further $200 billion worth of Chinese exports to the US. Apple hit $1 trillion market cap yesterday, with the news boosting stocks across many of the region. However, that tech boost failed to translate through to the Asian session. Data-wise, Australian retail sales remained stable at 0.4%, despite expectations of a slight decline. We also saw the Chinese Caixin manufacturing PMI fall to 52.8 from 53.9.

Looking ahead, today sees the heavy hitters come out on the economic front, with the UK services PMI reading due to bring substantial speculation over the UK economy’s largest sector. This will also have a knock-on effect upon GDP expectations. This PMI theme also carries into the US session, where the ISM non-manufacturing PMI reading comes out for the US economy. However, the biggest event of the day comes in the form of the US jobs report, with markets expecting to see payrolls move slightly lower and earnings to tick higher. On the corporate calendar, watch out for earnings reports from the likes of Berkshire Hathaway, and Kraft Heinz to close out the week.
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BoE Super Thursday - EMEA brief 2 Aug
Looking ahead, the UK PMI focus continues, with the construction sector under the microscope in the morning. That UK theme continues at midday, with the Bank of England widely expected to raise rates for the first time this year. A relatively quiet US session means that there will be a greater focus on wider economic issues and corporate earnings reports. With Caterpillar, Apple, and Tesla all out of the way, today sees reports from the likes of GoPro, Kellogg, and AIG.
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BoE interest rate decision 2nd August
Join the IG discussion: "This is it. We’re looking at a near 80% odd expectation of a rate rise despite many thinking that it may not be the best course of action in the long run. What are people’s expectations of the August rate hike? Likely to happen for good reason, or really for the BoE MPC to save face? Continued slow rate rises are needed I’m sure... but does the data support it? 

Second rate rise in 10 odd years. One thing’s for sure the banks are going to make bank (pun intended) if this comes through. Could be worth getting on the sector ETFs and short term stock swings. Steeper futures curve, better profitability on consumer debt / mortgages etc, whilst not as much of a pay out on banking interest, and latency in clients switching to bigger and better bank accounts."
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FOMC today - EMEA brief 1 August
Looking ahead, the beginning of a new month brings the usual trio of UK PMI readings, with the manufacturing figure kicking things off today. There are a host of eurozone PMI surveys, but for the most part they are revisions rather than the preliminary reading in the UK.

That PMI theme will carry into the US session, with the Canadian and US ISM manufacturing PMI surveys released later on. We also see the first of the major data points from the US, with the ADP payrolls figure ahead of this evening’s FOMC meeting. Crude markets will also expect volatility, with the release of the US crude inventories data earlier on in the afternoon. On the corporate front, all eyes will be on Tesla as Elon Musk hopes to prove the firm can be profitable going forward.
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BoJ maintains policy - EMEA brief 31 July
Following on from yet another bearish session in the US, we are seeing continued uncertainty despite the overnight BoJ decision to largely retain their monetary policy in similar shape. Monetary policy has been kept extremely accommodative. The bank’s shift in purchases of exchange-traded funds toward assets linked to the Topix index did little to help the index over the course of the session, yet for the most part market fears proved unfounded.

A busy economic calendar saw a largely bearish picture for the Japanese economy, with a rise in unemployment coming alongside fall in industrial production and consumer confidence. Chinese PMI figures did little to enable a more bullish outlook, with a deterioration in both services and manufacturing readings.

The morning will largely focus in on the eurozone CPI and GDP figures, with core inflation expected to tick higher to 1%. On the GDP front, the only expected change comes in the year-on-year figure, with markets looking for a tick lower to 2.4% (from 2.5%).
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ESMA margin rules from July 30th
New ESMA regulations coming into force for the EU region are set to standardise the way margin close out rules work for retail traders. On the IG trading platform the new margin close-out rules will come into effect from 1pm on Monday 30 July. Please find an overview of the new regulation and how this may effect your account. We've included a useful video and a worked example which may also help. 

Please remember that these changes only affect retail clients of EU firms (that are subject to ESMA regulation), and do not apply to professional clients. Please add any query, question, or request for clarification in the comments box.
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Trade War 'Relief', Key Rate Decisions and Apple Earnings - DailyFX Key Themes
Trade War Relief, But How Much? Fed, BoE and BoJ Rate Decisions for Individual and Collective Influence. FANG Has Set Up Apple as a More Important Capital Market Driver. Catch up on the three key themes this week from DFX's John Kicklighter.
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BoE rate changes this week? - EMEA brief 30 July
Overnight markets have started the week in a downbeat fashion, with losses across Chinese, Hong Kong, Japanese, and Australian markets amid a week of possible monetary tightening from the BoE and (potentially) the BoJ. The Nikkei is down 0.75%, as we lead into this week's Bank of Japan (BOJ) monetary policy meeting. With US tech stocks failing to perform on Friday, that uncertainty has carried through into this new week, with earnings season likely to continue dominating sentiment. Data-wise, Japanese retail sales rose to 1.65; marginally lower than the 1.7% expected.
 
Global markets are trading softer this morning with US Index Futures continuing Friday's decline which was led by the US Tech sector (after Twitter results disappointed). Looking ahead, today represents a very quiet day on the economic calendar, with little to no major events to keep an eye out for. As we enter the start of a new month, this lull will not last long, with events coming thick and fast towards the second half of the week. The dollar has firmed since Friday's strong GDP print. On the corporate front, watch out for earnings figures from Caterpillar, Loews Corp, and Electronic Arts. More results listed below.
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Dividend Adjustments 30 Jul - 03 Aug
Please see the expected dividend adjustment figures for a number of our major indices for the week commencing 30 July 2018. If you have any queries or questions on this please let us know in the comments section below. For further information regarding dividend adjustments, and how they affect  your positions, please take a look at the video.
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Twitter earnings today - EMEA brief 27th July
US Index Futures are staging a partial rebound this morning after yesterday's Nasdaq led decline following worse than expected results from Facebook.  The dollar has softened overnight and in turn we have seen some marginal gains in commodity prices. Looking ahead, a quiet day from Europe means the focus will be firmly fixed on the US GDP figure, which is expected to rise sharply to over 4%. Trump’s excitement at the ‘best financial numbers on the planet’ could possibly be another lead on the potential release, given his announcement about “looking forward to the jobs numbers” on the day of a massive NFP outperformance back in June.

The corporate calendar remains busy, with Twitter earnings maintaining the focus on tech stocks today. Meanwhile, we also have the likes of Exxon Mobil, Chevron, Colgate, Merck, and American Airlines numbers to look out for.
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Post in ECB - European Central Bank
Where do you see the markets moving on the back of the ECB meeting later today? ING's cut out and keep crib sheet may be useful for some of the currency traders among you, along with an alternative version published by TD. Ask the Community, or Ludwik from our FX and cryptocurrency desk, a trading question to get the most out of IG.
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US/EU trade talks go well - EMEA brief 26th July
The move in the US is led by the Nasdaq following a poor reception to Facebook results. The ongoing trade war narrative remains in the market place as Donald Trump meets with EU leaders.

European data has kicked off with the release of the German Gfk consumer climate number, which ticked moderately lower from 10.7 to 10.6. The eurozone focus will be maintained through the day, with today’s monetary policy decision from the ECB bringing heightened volatility and focus on the euro. We are unlikely to see any move from Draghi & co, yet this may not necessarily mean that we see the meeting pass without any fireworks. The US focus will be upon the impact of the EU-US trade deal, with many hoping this would become a blueprint for future dealings with China. On the calendar front, look out for core durable goods unemployment claims, and crucially the US trade balance data. 
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How will the new ESMA rules affect my IG account?
In January ESMA proposed a number of changes for leveraged retail traders within the EU region and kicked off a consultation period to open up the discussion. Over 14,600 people had their say via the #ReplyToESMA website with an overwhelming majority opposing the regulatory changes.

On the back of the proposal and trader feedback ESMA drew up new regulations which are set to go live on August the 1st. To comply with these new regulations you may notice some changes on your IG account from the week commencing Monday July 23rd 2018. Although not all regulatory changes will affect all clients (for example some regulatory changes only affect specific instruments or account types), you can find a roadmap for these changes below.
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Turkish lira crash - EMEA brief 25th July
The Turkish lira crashed yesterday as the central bank decided to keep rates unchanged despite soaring inflation. Meanwhile, the UK housing market looks to remain stagnant as figures released by HMRC showed housing transactions slipped last month by as much as 3%. House sales were down nearly 6% YoY. Housing market data in the US set to release today, so keep an eye out at 12 midday and 3pm for mortgage apps and new home sales figures. 

Banking shares continue to gain globally. Metro bank has said profits have quadrupled YoY in the first half, driven by continued strong growth in deposits, whilst UBS gave better than expected results yesterday. There are a number of prominent European banks set to release results this week, so keep an eye out for trade opportunities. 

Oil gained yesterday as traders factored in an expected Chinese stimulus package, as well as concerns on the US/Iran tensions which could significantly disrupt oil supplies. For energy traders this would be a story to keep an eye on, along with weekly inventories at 3.30pm.
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Opening second IG account in another country - email discussion
Please note we have recently emailed a number of European based clients regarding changes relating to ESMA. The thread and discussion below refers to that email. These changes only affect retail clients of EU firms (that are subject to ESMA regulation), and do not apply to professional clients. Please add any query, question, or request for clarification below.
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Chinese equity 1mo high - EMEA brief 24th July
A positive session overnight saw gains across Japanese, Chinese, Hong Kong and Australian indices. Government bonds added to a sense of stability, with yesterday’s BoJ-fuelled volatility easing to give way to a move stable session. However, that Japanese theme continued on the data-front, with a weak manufacturing PMI (51.6 from 53.0) and BoJ core CPI (0.4% from 0.5%) adding to the difficulty for Japanese central bankers. It is clear that despite a whole raft of loose monetary policies, strong growth and high inflation remains elusive. 

The PMI theme looks set to continue into the European session, with a whole raft of eurozone PMI surveys due out throughout the morning. Particular attention is likely to be paid to the manufacturing sector (particularly German) amid the trade war with the US. Once again, PMI surveys will be key in the US session, with both manufacturing and services PMI surveys providing the main economic releases of the day.
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Finance ‘fact, but fictionalised’ books
Get involved with a discussion from one of our Community members; "Which interesting finance and trading related books have you read and would recommend? Maybe they don’t need to ALL be specifically like that but any trading books you find interesting. 

I am currently reading Dark Pool by Scott Patterson and it’s very very interesting. I would recommend reading or getting from Amazon or the library if you can. Paperback is a few quid and it’s an interesting read. All about how these matching engines started and pooled liquidity away from the main exchanges. It gives you a good understanding of the “plumbing” behind it all. Also makes more sense when looking at the market. 

I’m the sort of person who would like to read as much around a topic as possible and I think it makes you a better well rounded trader to understand the back end too. Has anyone else got some books to recommend please?"
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Retail sector profit warnings - EMEA brief 23rd July
Fear of an increase in protectionism from the United States causes Asian equity markets to dip. Profit warnings rise 29% quarter on quarter to 58 FTSE listed companies. Retail sector leads the way, and its expected the earnings shall continue due to uncertainty in the future.

Looking ahead, a somewhat quiet start to the week on the economic calendar sees eyes turn to eurozone concerns, with the Bundesbank monthly report and consumer confidence from the eurozone. The US markets will be looking towards US existing home sales figure, following on last week’s disappointing building permits and housing starts figures. The earnings season ramps up, with today’s earnings from Alphabet representing the first heavy hitter to keep an eye out for.
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Dividend Adjustments 23 July - 27 July
Please see the expected dividend adjustment figures for a number of our major indices for the week commencing 23rd July 2018. If you have any queries or questions on this please let us know in the comments section below. For further information regarding dividend adjustments, and how they affect  your positions, please take a look at the video. 
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Market Screening for Dividend Opportunities
This article will also look at IGs market screening tool and attempt to come up with some ideas the stocks that could be bought on the basis of the dividend they offer. It seems a good time to at least begin starting to look at stocks that pay a good dividends (begin creating a Watchlist maybe?)  but crucially stocks that also seem capable of continuing to pay that dividend.

The reason for this article is the markets have been a bit turbulent lately: there are various geopolitical events on the horizon (which could trigger panic in the market) but also because with stocks trading near all-time highs it may be more prudent to look for stocks that pay in income (dividend) rather than stocks for future the growth potential. And lastly the previous stock market crash was 10 years ago. That in itself is not a sign of doom, but history repeats, eventually. 😉
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Comcast / Disney bidding war ends - EMEA brief 20th July
The Comcast / Disney bidding war for 21st Century Fox ended yesterday with the former pulling out of the race. Comcast have stated they are still planning on pursuing Sky. Asian equity markets pushed higher overnight over a volatile trading session as the Chinese yuan bounced off a one year low. Trump showed displeasure towards the Fed's hikes, criticising policy and highlighting concerns on the potential impact of rising interest rates on the US economy causing the Dollar to sag.

The losses seen in some of the Asian markets are expected to continue in Europe, with small drops for indices expected. Canadian CPI is the sole macro point of interest, while on the earnings front General Electric and Schlumberger report figures. The US dollar will also be in focus after President Trump commented that further rate increases could derail the economic boom in the US.
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Amazon tips $900bn - EMEA brief 19th July
The trillion dollar valuation race between Apple and Amazon continues with Amazon tipping the $900bn valuation yesterday. GBP continues to take a beating against major world currencies as CPI data yesterday remained unchanged, reducing the likelihood of a rate hike in August. US banking shares continue to do good in earning season as Morgan Stanley profit jump. Oil prices remain volatile but fall amid record U.S. output and stockpiling continues to build.
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UK CPI today - EMEA brief 18th July
Last nights positive speech on the US economy by Federal Chair Person Jerome Powell, combined with some better than expected results from the financial sector to help stage a rebound in US equity markets.

European concerns turn to the UK once more, with the latest inflation data due out this morning. Coming off the back of a somewhat underwhelming UK jobs report yesterday, the market expectations for a strong rise in CPI could be a key determinant of BoE sentiment ahead of their August meeting. Also look out for the eurozone CPI reading, although this is a final revision.

In the US, building permits and housing starts push the agenda onto the housing market, yet with Jerome Powell set to give his second monetary policy testimony in as many days, there is a chance he will grab the headlines. With crude price showing significant volatility over the past week, traders should watch for the US crude inventories figure, following the substantial drawdown in stocks announced last week.
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Earning season continues - EMEA brief 17th July
US corporate earnings have taken the mantle in terms of being at the forefront of driving short term market sentiment. Yesterday a softer results release from Netflix saw the tech sector weaker and in turn the Nasdaq leading declines amongst the major US indices. Oil prices have come under enormous pressure overnight as suggestions that the US may waiver some sanctions on Iran oil.

Looking ahead, a whole host of employment related data points from the UK brings the pound into focus. The dominant figure to look out of comes in the form of the average earnings number, with BoE’s Cunliffe specifically singling out the possible undershooting of wages as a reason to hold off on an August rate hike. Also keep an eye out for the US industrial production figure and an appearance from Fed governor Powell who is due to testify on monetary policy before the Senate Banking Committee.
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