Weekly Digest - INVESTEC
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Please find attached this week’s Weekly Digest. Last week was a positive one for risk assets, driven primarily by rising hopes of a US/China trade deal and comments from the US Federal Reserve that the central bank would take a ‘patient’ approach to monetary tightening. This week, attention turns to the Q4 corporate reporting season and the climax of the parliamentary Brexit debate, with the meaningful vote scheduled for tomorrow. The US results season will be led by the financials, as Citigroup reported today (shares currently +3.9%) with JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, Charles Schwab and Goldman Sachs among those following later in the week. Reporting also starts in the UK, with Experian, Sage, Whitbread and Rio Tinto the key names to watch.
As the Brexit vote approaches, the Prime Minister is warning that the prospect of no Brexit is now greater than that of no deal, and that a failure to deliver Brexit would represent a betrayal of the voters. The tactic also looks like an attempt to win over hard-line Brexiteers to vote for her deal on the basis that it is better than no Brexit. In the event of a defeat, Labour has said it will propose a motion of no confidence in the government, although the timing of that (as with much of Labour’s approach to Brexit) remains uncertain. Some media reports suggest that, in the event of a defeat, parliament will take control of formulating policy through a cross-party committee of senior backbenchers; others suggest the EU is willing to offer an extension to the departure date from 29 March until July. As usual, the main barometer of market sentiment towards Brexit will be sterling.