It is doubtful that anyone predicted that the financial markets would settle down only a week after the Brexit vote. Well, everyone was right because they didn’t. The UK stock markets moved with increases during most of the week following Bank of England’s (BOE) comments for possible monetary measures following the referendum’s ‘Leave’ result.
BOE’s Governor and Chairman of the Monetary Policy Committee, Mark Carney, gave a speech on Thursday during which he discussed the worsening outlook of the local economy following the referendum. Additionally, Chancellor George Osborne said that the austerity measures taken during the last years by the government could be eased and that the target for a Trade surplus within four years from now might be discarded. Mr. Osborne gave his view prior to the vote that spending reductions by as much as £30 billion and also increase of taxes would be necessary in case that the referendum result would be for UK to exit the EU.
The FTSE 100 Index posted serious gains during the week as Monday was the only trading session with losses. Since then there were sharp gains that resulted in an 8.4% increase and ended the trading week at 6,529.3. Likewise, FTSE 250 also posted weekly gains by an impressive 10%. But regardless of the stock market’s rally, securities issued by banks fell together with yields of bonds issued by the UK government following the likelihood of monetary stimulus.
Asian stock markets continued to be driven by Brexit and its implications as there is now a noteworthy likelihood that policymakers might introduce measures to limit the economic consequences of UK leaving the EU. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index during the week increased by 3.3%, while Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 and South Korea’s Kospi posted weekly gains by 2.8% and 3.1% respectively.
Demand for gold increased as expected due to uncertainty, on Friday the yellow shiny metal’s price posed gains by 1.5% and ended the week’s trading session at $1,341.3 per ounce. On the day after the referendum result the gold’s price jumped by 4.2%. However, the pound continued with its losses against the US dollar after Mark Carney’s speech by 0.9% on Thursday and a further 0.4% on Friday where the GBP/USD ended the weekly trading session at 1.32706.
Last week was dominated by excessive volatility in the financial markets as everyone is trying to predict what will happen following the UK’s vote to ‘Leave’. The stock market’s nosedive following the Brexit vote was followed by significant recoveries of shares and by Thursday the FTSE 100 index reached back to the level it was prior to the referendum. However, the FTSE 250 which includes a larger number of companies linked primarily with the UK economy is still well below its pre-Brexit level.
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