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Corporate news supports FTSE, economic data weighs

Mixed corporate news, a dip in sterling and discouraging UK economic data are keeping the FTSE just above the red line but stopping it from really taking off.

The monthly Kantar supermarket sales numbers confirmed that UK consumers continue to favour discount chains Lidl and Aldi over the big four. However, Sainsbury’s shares managed to gain from the research which showed that the chain lost only 0.2% of sales to the discounters compared with Asda’s 1.2% decline in market share and Morrisons’ 1.7%.

ITV shares also perked up after the company reiterated its full year revenue guidance. The Rugby World Cup played  a beneficial role for the company’s advertising revenue in the third quarter and the online income continued to grow during  the reporting period.

Pound’s rally fizzles out

Yesterday’s late rally in the pound/dollar exchange rate turned into a damp squib this morning with job data pouring cold water over sterling’s bounce higher. Going into the election the UK’s job market is turning weaker with fewer job openings, slower wage growth and falling employment numbers.  

All eyes on Trump’s trade speech

As the US-China trade talks yet again seem to be hanging in the balance with conflicting signals coming from various negotiators, none more so than President Donald Trump, his speech later today at the Economic Club in New York will have the market's full attention. It seems for once that a resolution is within reach as both sides recently promised to revoke some of the tariffs.

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