FTSE 100 Live: BP pledges £18bn UK investment as profits surge


FTSE 100 lower in catch up trading

The FTSE 100 index is set to open 60 points lower at 7484 as traders in London catch up on developments after the long weekend.

Markets in Paris and Frankfurt are poised to start 30 points and 80 points higher respectively, having already reacted to Friday’s heavy losses on Wall Street. In thin trading yesterday, European markets fell sharply at one point after a trader error triggered a “flash crash”.

A late comeback meant leading US share indices finished higher last night, with the Nasdaq up 1.6% after coming under heavy selling pressure the previous week. Futures markets are also pointing higher ahead of today’s session.

Wall Street’s steadier performance reflects acceptance that the Federal Reserve will increase interest rates by half a percentage point when policymakers meet this week.

Earlier today, the Reserve Bank of Australia raised its headline rate from 0.1% to 0.35%, the first time the country’s central bank has lifted rates in over a decade.

The latest meeting of the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee concludes on Thursday, with policymakers expected to announce another rise in interest rates.

Ahead of their meeting, this morning’s publication of UK manufacturing PMI figures for April will provide further insight into the impact of rising prices on activity.

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