04 May Avantisteam Reported Europe slumps as US-China tensions escalate over origins of…
Good morning. European markets are set to follow Asian equities firmly into the red, as US-China tensions continued to escalate over the weekend.
In an interview on Sunday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reiterated US government claims that Covid-19 originated in a laboratory in Wuhan, without providing any evidence. China denies the claims.
5 things to start your day
1) Confidence among UK businesses has hit its lowest level on record. It emerged a year’s worth of profit warnings had already been issued in 2020.
2) Loan losses to pass £50bn as households and firms struggle in debt, economists warn. Low-income households will need to aggressively slash spending, experts say.
3) UK fishing ports face collapse after demand plummets. Port bosses are additionally worried about their future under the new UK-EU trading relationship
4) Warren Buffett sells all shares in major airlines amid $50bn loss. Mr Buffett warned ‘the world has changed for airline’ and passenger numbers may not recover.
5) Restaurant tycoon Richard Caring battles to rescue empire. The entrepreneur could be forced to serve up new funding for his restaurants after auditors cast doubt over their future.
What happened overnight
Stocks in Asia retreated along with U.S. and European futures, indicating the risk-off move that’s hit markets at the start of this month may have further to run.
Shares in Hong Kong saw the bulk of losses, with those in Seoul and Singapore also dropping. The Sydney market edged up after tumbling the previous session. China’s yuan maintained Friday’s slide amid concern tensions with the US are increasing.
Trading volumes may be light due to holidays in China and Japan
Coming up today
No FTSE 350 companies are due to report
Manufacturing PMI (eurozone); durable goods & factory orders (US)