E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 retreated 0.5 percent in early action, while gold rose 0.77 percent to $1,739 an ounce. Oil prices also slipped, while sovereign bonds picked up the usual safe-haven bid. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged up 0.2 percent as did Japan’s Nikkei. “If American consumers were reluctant to come out of their Covid19 lockdown cocoon, fearing a secondary spreader with police cars ablaze, freeways blocked, and videos of mass looting shared through social media like wildfire, they’re not going to feel any safer,’ said Stephen Innes, chief global markets strategist at AxiCorp.
The May jobs report due out on Friday is forecast to show the unemployment rate surged to 19.8%, smashing April’s record 14.7 percent.
Payrolls are expected to drop by 7.4 million, on top of the 20.5 million jobs lost the previous month.
“Current unemployment numbers go far beyond what has been experienced in any post-war recession,” wrote Barclays economist Christian Keller in a note.
“To the extent that some sectors may never return to pre-pandemic business-as-usual, labour faces a substantial challenge to reallocate workers,” he added. “Such a process could be a matter of years rather than months or quarters and in the meantime it would weigh on consumer demand.”
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FTSE 100 LIVE: Asian shares remained cautious over US riots
2.45pm update: FTSE-100 up 64.01
The FTSE-100 index at 2:45pm was up 64.01 at 6140.61.
2.10pm update: Rishi Sunak says we’re getting our lives back to normal
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has said people are starting to get their lives back to normal after the Government eased some coronavirus lockdown restrictions.
He said: “Slowly we are going to get our lives back to normal.
“We are now at the stage of that plan when we can get our lives a little bit more back to normal – but that is not an overnight, big bang thing – it is measured, progressive. We are doing it in a safe and responsible way.
“Hopefully at the beginning of July we will be able to get many more restaurants and pubs open as well.
“People should have the confidence to go out there and get their lives a little bit more back to normal.”
1.45pm update: FTSE-100 up 52.82
The FTSE-100 index at 1:45pm was up 52.82 at 6129.42.
12.45pm update: FTSE-100 up 71.76
The FTSE-100 index at 12:45pm was up 71.76 at 6148.36.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has said people are starting to get their lives back to normal after the Government eased some coronavirus lockdown restrictions
12.25pm update: New Sainsbury’s boss promises to listen more to customers
The new chief executive of Sainsbury’s vowed to listen more to customers and improve the experience for shoppers as he started his first day in the job on Monday.
In a message to staff, Simon Roberts said: “Starting today, I will be spending more time with customers and listening to their feedback.
“I am really looking forward to hearing directly from people about what they want from us so we can change and adapt to ensure we are always meeting their needs.”
11.45am update: FTSE-100 up 62.92
The FTSE-100 index at 11:45am was up 62.92 at 6139.52.
11.20am update: Manufacturing recovers slightly but remains at financial crisis lows – survey
Manufacturing in the UK has improved slightly from April but still remains at levels not seen since the financial crisis, according to new figures.
The IHS Markit/CIPS purchasing managers’ index (PMI) recorded a score of 40.7 in May as the coronavirus lockdown started to ease, up from 32.6 in April.
However the data also showed output, new orders and employment in the sector all fell at some of the fastest rates in the 28-year survey’s history.
At 40.7 for May, the score was the seventh-lowest ever.
10.45am update: FTSE-100 up 58.65
The FTSE-100 index at 10:45am was up 58.65 at 6135.25.
Banknote maker De La Rue has said demand for its currencies remains strong despite people switching to card payments in a bid to combat the spread of coronavirus
10.30am update: Banknote maker says demand remains strong
Banknote maker De La Rue has said demand for its currencies remains strong despite people switching to card payments in a bid to combat the spread of coronavirus.
The company, which prints notes for the Bank of England, said it had contracts in place that would keep its currency factories working at high capacity for the rest of the year.
It said: “In currency, De La Rue is experiencing strong demand that has continued during the Covid-19 pandemic and has been awarded contracts representing approximately 80 percent of its available full-year currency printing capacity.”
10am update: Ted Baker to raise £95m after annual loss
Fashion brand Ted Baker is set to raise £95 million from investors to slash its debt.
The clothing company revealed its Ted’s Formula for Growth strategy which it hopes will boost sales as coronavirus restrictions are eased.
It said the cash boost will go towards stabilising its finances and supporting the turnaround plan.
The fundraiser came as the retail group revealed that it slumped to a £79.9 million loss for the year to January, from a £30 million profit a year earlier.
Meanwhile, total revenue for the year dipped by 1.4 percent to £630.5 million.
9.45am update: FTSE-100 up 49.39
The FTSE-100 index at 9:45am was up 49.39 at 6125.99.
9.15am update: FTSE-100 up 52.87
The FTSE-100 index at 9:15am was up 52.87 at 6129.47.
Fashion brand Ted Baker is set to raise £95 million from investors to slash its debt
8.55am update: Primark to reopen all stores in England on June 15
Primark owner Associated British Foods (ABF) has said it is working to reopen all its 153 stores in England on June 15 after the Government gave non-essential retailers the green light to welcome customers again.
It said that it expects to have reopened 281 of its stores by that date, having already reopened 112 of its sites across mainland Europe.
The retailer said it is awaiting further guidance regarding stores in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales but anticipates openings in “late June”.
ABF shut all its Primark stores in March due to the coronavirus outbreak, which it said resulted in a loss of around £650 million for every month that all stores were closed.
8.45am update: FTSE-100 up 96.97
The FTSE-100 index at 8:45am was up 96.97 at 6173.57.
8.15am update: FTSE-100 up 81.62
The FTSE-100 index at 8:15am was up 81.62 at 6158.22.
Primark is working to reopen all its 153 stores in England on June 15
8am update: FTSE-100 opens at 6076.60
The FTSE-100 index opened at 6076.60.
7.15am update: South Africa eases lockdown to fix economy
South Africa has started to lift its two-month lockdown to try and rescue its economy.
Mines and factories are allowed to run at full capacity, while people can go outside to work, worship, exercise and shop.
South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa ordered the lockdown at the end of March.
But the measures have battered the country’s economy which was already in recession before the virus.
5.53am update: Pandemic set to shrink Australian economy in first quarter with worse yet to come
Australia’s economy is expected to have shrunk in the first quarter as the global coronavirus pandemic is set to tip the country into its first recession in three decades.
A Reuters poll of 15 economists forecast the A$2 trillion economy to contract by 0.3 percent in the three months to March – the first quarterly decline in nine years.
Annual growth likely slowed to 1.4 percent from 2.2 percent in 2019, the survey showed.
If the economy contracts in both the March and June quarters it would be Australia’s first technical recession since the early 1990s.