City Watch: Brian Tora on how the markets have been regaining lost ground

Brian Tora of J M Finn & Co

Brian Tora of J M Finn & Co - Credit: Archant

Two weeks ago I was remarking that investors would have a lot to get their teeth into. It seems the pace of news dissemination is quickening, if anything.

Not only do we have a busy time ahead of us for both regular corporate and economic news, but activity that is less easy to predict is picking up, too.

The news that Aviva, the giant insurance company that was once known as Norwich Union, is running its slide rule over Friends Life gave further cheer to a market that has now regained most of the ground lost earlier in the autumn.

China cutting its interest rates also helped, driving Asian markets higher, while the boss of the European Central Bank also made encouraging noises over the action he was likely to take to stimulate Europe’s flagging economies.

All this positive news has been sufficient to push the FTSE 100 idex back over 6700, recording an even bigger rise last week than Wall Street.

Of course, not all the news has been good. It seems Royal Bank of Scotland’s woes are never ending, with severe criticism being heaped upon its senior executives from the chair of the important Treasury Select Committee. And all this so soon after its most recent fine, for technology troubles.

While much of the economic data due this week will be coming from America, we also have Thanksgiving Day on Thursday. Markets in the US will be closed and many extend the holiday into the weekend by taking Friday off. Little wonder this day is now known as “Black Friday”.

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: : Brian Tora is an associate with investment managers JM Finn & Co.