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FTSE down marginally on last trading day of the year

The last trading day of the year has seen the FTSE marginally down with very little volume, reflecting a second week of hibernation on many City trading desks. NMC Healthcare remains a stock to watch, with shares down 1.74% this morning as the market tries to make up its mind just where NMC really stands following a damning report from short seller and research firm Muddy Waters earlier this month.

JD Sports was notably up on the day, one of the few retailers that has been able to consistently add value throughout the year, doubling its share price in 2019.

The S&P 500 looks like it is still in ‘Santa rally’ territory however, after a good December, despite coming off 0.6% Monday.

Ghosn flees Japan, Nissan shares down

Former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn, who was on trial in Japan for allegedly misstating his earnings from his role at Nissan-Renault, has fled to Lebanon in a private jet, breaking his bail terms, in a further twist in the drama that has overshadowed the alliance between the companies. Ghosn had been due to stand trial in Tokyo next month.

Nissan shares are currently trading at a five year low in Tokyo. Ghosn’s flight all but damns the alliance between Renault and Nissan, which was already struggling before his arrest in 2018. It also comes at a time when the auto sector is navigating choppy waters, with the EU seeking to find a solution to US tariffs next year as European and global car makers fight to remain profitable.

Hong Kong sees major December rally

Hong Kong stocks look set to cap off an excellent December rally as riots and protests in the territory continued yesterday. The Hang Seng has put on more than 7% although economists worry about the Hong Kong economy, which is now in recession. Much of the optimism is being driven by the news of the phase one US/China trade agreement rather than the politics on the ground in HK.

 

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