Interactive Investor

Market snapshot: will US stimulus meet election deadline?

21st October 2020 08:24

Richard Hunter from interactive investor


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Lots for investors to consider as the US election, Netflix results and UK inflation move the market.

Renewed hope for a US stimulus package slipping in under the wire have pushed markets higher.

The reported differences between the rival US political parties on the package were said to be narrowing, although from a practical perspective a stimulus of any description needs to be agreed before the end of the week to meet the election deadline. As such, the next couple of trading sessions are likely to be heavily influenced by further developments, with sentiment likely to wax and wane accordingly.

A generally positive set of company updates was slightly offset by the latest release from Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX). Despite adding 2.2 million new subscribers in the quarter amid earnings of $790 million, both numbers were light of expectations and the stock fell by 6% in after-hours trade. Even so, after two previous quarters of adding more than 10 million subscribers, the stock remains up by over 60% in the year to date.

Stimulus discussions and the ongoing effects of the pandemic on economic prospects are continuing to cap gains, with markets generally drifting over recent days. The Dow Jones is now down by 0.8% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq are showing gains of 6.6% and 28.3% respectively.

The UK government’s extraordinary spending spree in an effort to shore up the economy continues apace, with a reported borrowing number of a further £36 billion in September also bolstered by a lower tax take.

UK inflation spiked slightly higher than expected following the expiry of the “Eat Out to Help Out” scheme, while negotiations with the EU are edging towards what currently seems to be an unresolved climax.

Meanwhile, the FTSE 100 index remains down by 22% in the year to date, with many more questions than answers currently deciding the direction of an index which continues to lag the performance of its global peers.

These articles are provided for information purposes only.  Occasionally, an opinion about whether to buy or sell a specific investment may be provided by third parties.  The content is not intended to be a personal recommendation to buy or sell any financial instrument or product, or to adopt any investment strategy as it is not provided based on an assessment of your investing knowledge and experience, your financial situation or your investment objectives. The value of your investments, and the income derived from them, may go down as well as up. You may not get back all the money that you invest. The investments referred to in this article may not be suitable for all investors, and if in doubt, an investor should seek advice from a qualified investment adviser.

Full performance can be found on the company or index summary page on the interactive investor website. Simply click on the company's or index name highlighted in the article.

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