The FTSE 100 closed higher on Thursday (10 December) after the UK and EU agreed to extend Brexit talks until Sunday. The UK’s blue-chip index ended the day up 0.54% at 6,599.76.
SECTOR IN FOCUS
The stock market debut of home sharing website AirBnb Inc (ABNB) has caused a stir among investors and the media in the past few weeks.
Over the past 12 years, AirBnb has become the go-to platform for travellers looking to stay somewhere a little more unique or homely than a hotel.
In a nutshell, the San Francisco-based firm allows homeowners to rent out their property to holidaymakers or anyone else looking for accommodation for a short period of time.
The home sharing website debuted on the Nasdaq stock exchange on Thursday (10 December), opening at $68, at least $8 more than expected. It means the firm is worth roughly $47bn (£35.3bn).
This suggests that investors are confident about the firm’s prospects. However, as we have seen, the travel sector has been one of the worst affected by coronavirus.
Governments have introduced strict travel and quarantine restrictions this year, which has wiped billions off the share prices of airlines, hotel group and other travel related stocks.
Many experts now believe it could be a year or two – or even longer – before the travel industry recovers fully from coronavirus.
Therefore, it perhaps only makes sense to invest in AirBnb – or any other travel stock – if you are willing to hold onto your shares for the long-term.
The UK’s economic recovery from coronavirus is showing signs of petering out, new data shows.
On Thursday (10 December), the ONS revealed that the economy grew by just 0.4% in October.
While still positive, it means growth has slowed considerably since August and September, when the economy expanded by 2.2% and 1.1%, respectively.
It also means that the economy is still 8% smaller than it was before coronavirus struck.
Experts fear the next set of data will show that the economy shrank again in November as a result of the lockdowns in England and Wales.
If estimates are correct, and the economy shrinks 10% in 2020 as expected, it will mark the UK’s worst economic performance in more than 300 years.
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15 December – Online estate agent Purplebricks Group plc (PURP) expects to announce forecasting-beating profit figures when it releases its first-half results on Tuesday (15 October). The firm has been a beneficiary of increased demand from buyer and sellers since the post-lockdown reopening of the housing market in May.
16 December – Electrical retailer Dixons Carphone plc (DC) has shown levels of resilience during coronavirus that other retailers can only dream of. Its latest trading update in September revealed strong increases in revenue and online sales. It reports its interim results on Wednesday (16 December).