It comes after Asiah shares slipped this morning, brushing off a firmer Wall Street lead as China’s post-holiday rally cooled. Weakness emerged early in China as the Shanghai Composite .SSEC slipped 0.5 percent, trimming gains made in the trading days since a week-long public holiday last week. China’s blue chip index CSI300 .CSI300 shed 0.3 percent. However, despite shares slipping, a buoyant tech sector and fresh optimism about US stimulus are expected to continue to support sentiment. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS also dipped into negative territory in the Asian session, down 0.09 percent.
Despite the losses, Surich Asset Management founder Simon Yuen said he was confident Asian stock markets would retain positive fundamentals following the US election on November 3.
He told Reuters: “We expect Asian equities should outperform the global equity market in next two to three years because if Biden is elected US shall have an easier relationship with China,” Yuen said.
“On the other hand, if Trump is elected, China will promote demand in terms of consumer spending in order to increase their dominance over the world.”
On Wall Street, the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC on Monday staged its biggest one-day rally in a month, jumping 2.56 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 0.88 percent and the S&P 500 .SPX gained 1.64 percent.
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9.30am update: Reaction to UK unemployment chaos
Neil Carberry, CEO of The Recruitment & Employment Confederation, said this morning’s ONS update was “no surprise”.
He said: “The employment rate has been buoyant because of the furlough scheme and has started to drop as it ends and employers are forced to make redundancies where they cannot be avoided.
“The pick-up in unemployment and spike in redundancies emphasises again that tackling rising unemployment needs a team effort from Government and businesses designed to help people transition to growing areas of the labour market.
“The increasing number of vacancies emphasises that jobs are being created, in line with what our Jobs Recovery Tracker has been saying. The situation is already very different to the period covered by the ONS – we’re counted 1.2 million job ads across the UK right now.
“The data underpins the importance of getting the winter right economically. Making sure we support demand in the economy and people unable to work should be our priority.
“This means supporting temporary workers affected by local lockdowns and looking at how to support all the businesses in the affected supply chains that stand to lose out. Cutting employers National Insurance contributions could help boost hiring and keep people in work.
“It’s important we also focus on measures that will affect the economy in the long-term, securing a Brexit deal that guarantees smooth trading relations with the EU which is essential for our economic stability.”
8.30am update: FTSE plummets on open
The FTSE has dropped sharply this morning, following on from yesterday’s losses.
The UK index closed at 6,001 yesterday but within half an hour of trading this morning had fallent to 5,964.
This marks a loss of 37 points in just 30 minutes.
7.20am update: ONS issues sobering job stats
The number of UK workers on payrolls increased by 20,000 last month, but has fallen by 673,000 between March and September due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
Jonathan Athow, deputy national statistician at the ONS, said: “The latest monthly tax numbers show that the number of employees on the payroll was little changed in September.
“However, in total there were still nearly 700,000 fewer than in March, before the lockdown.
“Our newly adjusted survey figures show that in the latest period almost half a million fewer people were in work than just before the pandemic, while almost 200,000 others said they were employed but were currently not working nor earning any money.
“Since the start of the pandemic there has been a sharp increase in those out of work and job hunting but more people telling us they are not actively looking for work.
“There has also been a stark rise in the number of people who have recently been made redundant.”
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