17 April 2020
The FTSE 100 finished Thursday (9 April) strongly despite warnings that the UK economy could shrink by up to 25% in the second quarter of the year if the coronavirus lockdown persists. London’s index of blue-chip shares climbed 2.81% to 5,837.09.
SECTOR IN FOCUS
Investors were eagerly awaiting the outcome of a special Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) after markets closed on Thursday (9 April). Attendees met to discuss a deal between Saudi Arabia and Russia to cut production, with further talks due to be held on Friday (10 April). Analysts says that the price of oil could surge if a cut is agreed, which would probably push up the share of British oil giants BP plc (BP.) and Royal Dutch Shell plc (RDSA). However, the price of oil could sink to fresh lows if a deal can’t be reached.
We have seen in recent week that the coronavirus is having a damaging effect on the UK economy. But how are individual regions faring? On Wednesday (18 April), Natwest’s UK Regional PMI survey should tell us the pandemic is affecting business output in nine English regions, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are coping with the pandemic. From this, we should be able to determine the areas of the UK most effected by the crisis.
With strong corporate governance, political stability and a host of global world-class companies available at relatively low valuations, Japan has long been a favourite with UK investors looking to diversify their portfolios. The five-star Morningstar rated JPM Japan Fund C – Net Accumulation (GB00B235RG08) gives you exposure to these companies for an ongoing charge of 0.82%.
15 April – Analysts have been fairly bullish about JD Sports Fashion plc’s (JD) prospects, with many believing the firm will emerge from the coronavirus crisis relatively unscathed due to its robust balance sheet and healthy trading figures. Investors will want to see further evidence of this when the sports retailer posts its full-year results on Wednesday (15 April).
16 April - Keyword Studios plc (KWS), a provider of technical services to the video games industry, is set to issue its full-year results on Thursday (16 April). The firm claimed at the end of last month that it had so far seen minimal disruption to business from COVID-19.