Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

The pound repeatedly re-establishes four-month highs against the dollar
Sterling also hitsa new five-month high against the euro
FTSE 250 wobbles as investors weigh up holdings indomestically-exposed shares
Neil Woodford: Rise and fall of a star fund manager
Jeremy Warner:Climate change could be the spark that sets global productivity on fire
Market wrap:
With no Brexit dealannouncement expected tonight, let's wrap things up here for the evening.
Thank you for following along!
We will be back tomorrow with all the latest business and market news(unless of course there are any surprises before then!)
'Dyson should stick to vacuum cleaners', says Volvo chief as he launches first electric car
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Volvo boss Hakan Samuelsson says Sir James Dyson underestimated how tough the car business is
The boss of Volvo has said that Sir James Dyson should go back to making vacuum cleaners following the British inventors aborted attempt to build an electric car, my colleague Alan Tovey reports.
He writes:

Hakan Samuelsson, chief executive of the Swedish car company, said the billionaires decision last week to abandon a ?2.5bn move into the automotive world highlights just how difficult the sector is.
Launching Volvo's own first all-electric vehicle, Mr Samuelsson said:He underestimates how hard the car sector is to enter.
There may be room for niche players but many of them underestimate the challenge.
As well as research and development, you need production expertise, the welding parts together, and most importantly the whole global service network to support vehicles.
Pound falls slightly on news
Sterlingis still up against the dollar and the euro for the day but has dropped slightly on the news that the deal won't be settled tonight.
It is now 0.48pc higher against the dollar at $1.2826 and 0.08pc up against the euro at 1.1586.
VAT holding up agreement
No10 insiders saying it doesnt feel like a deal will be struck tonight. Apparently VAT and DUP are still proving tough to solve. Sebastian Payne (@SebastianEPayne) October 16, 2019
Michel Barnier is still updating EU27 ambassadors.

He has told them everything agreed except VAT (as widely reported).

Still huge uncertainty for EU about whether rest will stick in London.
"It's always nothing is agreed until everything is agreed," says one source. Jennifer Rankin (@JenniferMerode) October 16, 2019
Bank of England hopeful Helena Morrissey says next Governor must be more positive on Britain and keep rates above zero
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Dame Helena Morrissey is one of the most high-profile women in the City of London and a vocal Brexiteer - and she wants the next Governor of the Bank of England to be more upbeat on Britain's future
The next Bank of England Governor must be positive aboutBritains future, encourage Government investment and keep interest rates above zero, Dame Helena Morrissey has said.
She is aBrexiteer,star fund manager and potential candidate to replace Mark Carney, though she hasnot commented on her own chances of getting the job.
"The incoming Governor must truly believe that Britain has a bright future. Its the combination of strengths that marks us out: great design and fintech, the best legal framework for deals, green finance expertise etc," said Dame Helena, writing in the Spectator.
Read Tim Wallace's full report here
Oh, never mind... look's like it won't be happening tonight folks
Simply not clear if that means there's no way forward yet or just a case of extending talks into tomorrow cos they need a bit more time - will clarify as soon as have more Laura Kuenssberg (@bbclaurak) October 16, 2019
So as I just said on @itvnews, now no chance of Brexit deal tonight. Not at all sure about what that means for what can be agreed by EU leaders on Thursday and Friday Robert Peston (@Peston) October 16, 2019
Govt source says no Brexit deal tonight, because of unresolved issues with both the DUP and EU: "Everyone will be working into the night but there wont be a deal this evening". Tom Newton Dunn (@tnewtondunn) October 16, 2019
Hold tight... A Brexit announcement is imminent
Hearing from UK sources that a big #Brexit announcement is imminent... Samuel Stolton (@SamuelStolton) October 16, 2019
Dragons' Den Peter Jones eyes rescue plan for Jessops stores
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

The retailer made sales of ?119m last year
Dragons' Den TV star and businessman Peter Jones is mulling a rescue plan for the property arm of Jessops, having bought the collapsed camera chain six years ago.
Mr Jones is poised to draft in administrators atResolve, a restructuring firm, for JR Prop Limited, whichmanages Jessops' leasehold property estate, including the majority of its 46stores.
The move could lead to store closures in months ahead, putting 500 jobs at risk.
Government primed to wrestle Northern rail from German operator
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

The line has been plagued by delays and cancellations
Ministers are laying the groundwork to renationalise one of Britains biggest train franchises, wrestling it from the clutches of Germanys state rail operator, my colleague Oliver Gill reports. He writes:

Transport secretary Grant Shapps told a parliamentary committee on Wednesday thatthe Government is planning to bring Northern rail into public ownership.
The network's performance has been hit by strikes, bungled timetable changes anddelays to vital upgrades of tracks and trains.
Northerns poor performance cannot continue, Mr Shapps said.
The comments confirm expectations that the Governments Operator of Last Resort (OLR) is limbering up to step in.
Quick market update
The pound is now 0.65pc higher against the dollar, trading at $1.2848 and it 0.17pc up against the euro at 1.1597.
Here's a quick look at how commodities are doing...
Precious Metals update:#Gold 1487 +0.41%#Silver 1738 -0.14%#Platinum 886 +0.02%#Palladium 1774 +2.03%#XAUUSD #Commodities IGSquawk (@IGSquawk) October 16, 2019
Macron on Brexit
French President Emmanuel Macron said: "I'd like to believe a deal is being finalised."
"Our hope, our goal is to be able to endorse an accord that I hope will be reached in the coming hours. The echos we've had are positive," Macron said of crunch talks among EU officials.
French Pres. Macron: Brexit Agreement Is Being Finalised LiveSquawk (@LiveSquawk) October 16, 2019
M&G hires City law firm to examine sexual harassment allegations
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Pedestrians cross a bridge in the City of London
Fund manager M&G has hired City law firm Baker McKenzie to investigate allegations that one its senior managers sexually harassed junior female colleagues.
The unnamed fund manager is accused of targeting womenat the firms London headquarters with sexually explicit text messages and inappropriate comments, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday,citing sources claiming to have witnessed the behaviour.
The allegations were reported by Gavin Finch, the same Bloombergjournalist who earlier this year uncovered widespread sexual harassment and bullying across the Lloyd's of London insurance market.
Read the full report here
More on Netflix...
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Michael Hewson at CMC Markets says:

"Is the bubble starting to bust forNetflixand its share price, already down sharply from its highs this year, we could see it revisit the lows seen at the end of last year when it traded at $231.50, before peaking at ?378 in May this year, if todays latest numbers show further signs of slowing, after a disappointing update in July.
"With Disney and Apple set to launch cheaper packages as we head into year-end,Netflixmanagement may well have some hard choices to make when it comes to pricing if there are clear signs of subscriber churn away from them, and towards the two new high profile kids on the block."
"Quite simply the streaming market is becoming more and more crowded, and while for nowNetflixcan justify its premium price, due to its much greater content, the deep pockets of Apple and Disney could well change that in the years ahead."
How's it looking across the pond?
Stocks on Wall Street are in the red at the moment, with the Dow Jones unchanged and the S&P 500 0.11pc behing.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq is currently 0.30pc lower.
The mood on Wall Street is muted as President Trump said that China have started purchasing agricultural goods, but a trade deal wont be signed until he meets Chinas Xi Jinping in November.
Also, Netflixwill be releasingits third-quarter numbers after the market close today and is trading almost 1pc down at $281.64.
The streaming services popularity seems to be running out of steam as its July update revealed poor subscribers numbers. The US customer base dropped by 126,000, which was nowhere near the gains of more than 350,000 that traders were expecting. On an international basis, it added 2.83 million new subscribers, undershooting forecasts.
Markets Hub I Dow Jones Industrial Average
Dont worry Neil Woodford, there is life after a business calamity just ask Gerald Ratner
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

A joke made by Gerald Ratner wiped ?500m from the value of his company and changed his life forever
Despite building a jewellery empire that spanned 1,500 stores and made profits of ?125m a year, Gerald Ratner isnt known for his success in business but for a major gaffe made during an after-dinner speech in 1991.
In a joke that would catapult Ratner to infamy and result in ?500m being wiped from the value of his company, the Ratner Group, the chief executive said of his stock: People say, How can you sell this for such a low price? I say, Because its total crap, adding that his stores earrings were cheaper than an M&S prawn sandwich but probably wouldn't last as long.
Read Sophie Smith's full article here
Good afternoon
Hi everyone, thanks for following along with Louistoday.
I'll be taking you into the evening and keeping an eye on all thing Brexit (among other things of course).
This is the latest from Reuters. They are saying there's a deal agreed, apart from on VAT...

Handover: Pound upbeat after day of shivers and shakes
With everything to play for in the next few hours, the pound is looking strong back up near those four- and five-month highs against the dollar and euro.
Banks are getting ready for a potential frenetic night: at Barclays, traders will be in the office earlier and staying later and extra staff will be on call to help clients.
JCRAs Andy Scott says:

It's a tense situation for those having to trade GBP as market swings of 100 pips in one direction, can reverse in a matter of seconds when headlines cause shifts in sentiment. As can be seen from the current level of Sterling, the market is fairly optimistic that a deal will be reached over the coming days.

It wasnt such a glorious day for Britains main stock indices:
The FTSE 100 closed down 0.61pc at 7,167.95
The FTSE 250 closed down 0.05pc at 20.187.96
Theres still some way to go.So Im going to hand over to my colleague LaToya Harding, who will cover things heading into the evening.
As a reminder, you can also follow the political nitty-gritty here:Brexit deal latest news: Donald Tusk says deal is ready, but there are certain doubts on the British side
UK lags as EU car sales accelerate
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

More car stock images, sorry

Oli Scarff/Getty
The gulf in consumer confidence levels between the UK and the rest of the Continent has been highlighted by the latest data on new car sales across Europe. My colleague Alan Tovey reports:

Registrations of new cars across all of Europe jumped 14.5pc in September compared with the same month a year ago, hitting 1.249m, according to European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA).
However, new car sales in the UK in September edged up just 1.3pc to 343,255, despite it being a new registration plate month, traditionally a big driver of sales.
Although the five major markets Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the UK in the 27-member group all registered growth, Britain lagged behind. The others recorded double-digit rises, led by Germany, where sales rose 22.2pc to 244,622.
Cars are one of the biggest household purchases and seen as a good barometer of consumer confidence.
On a year to date basis, Europe-wide car sales were down 1.6pc to 11.77m, while the UK was off by 2.5pc at 1.86m.
Hipgnosis buys Timbalands back catalogue
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Timbaland has produced several hit albums for Justin Timberlake

Dave J Hogan/Getty
Time for a slighty off-beat story now:The producer behind smash hits including Nelly FurtadosManeaterandCry Me a Riverby Justin Timberlake has sold his back catalogue toHipgnosis Songs Fundin one of the firm's biggest deals to date.
My colleague Chris Johnston reports:

Timbaland (also known asTimothy Mosley) has written and produced multi-million selling albums and singles for the likes of Missy Elliott and Aaliyahas well as Furtado andTimberlakein a career spanning three decades and his unique hip hop-influenced production style and sound has continued to influence artists today.
Hipgnosis, which listed on the London stock exchange in July last year for ?200m,has bought 108albums and songs from Timbaland including tracks he wrote and produced forartists including Rihanna, Drake, Jay-Z and Madonna.
Read more here:Hipgnosis Songs Fund snaps up Timbaland catalogue
Wall Street slightly lower
Over in the US, Wall Street is looking slightly sleepy, just the wrong side of flat. Trade tensions, friction with China over Hong Kong and some iffy retail figures arent enough to have prompted a big drop, however.
Should we double the inflation target?
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Bank of England governor Mark Carney

After some pretty lacklustre inflation figures this morning, economists are asking why the Bank of England is falling short of its 2pc target rate.
Theres one proposal that might work, writes Economics Editor Russell Lynch: raising the target. The theory goes (in laymans terms), that a higher target would give ratesetters more room to cut interest, and therefore increase the chance of hitting the original target if you undershoot.
Makes sense? Theres definitely some logic in it, writes Russell. He says:

Discussion of the 2pc target is rare amongBank of England policymakers, so it was notable that two Monetary Policy Committee members have broken cover on the topic in the space of a fortnight.

Im going to leave the rest with him, because it is a complex issue and is best read in full (Idont want angry Monetary Policy Committee members showing up in the comments).
Read it here:Should we double the inflation target to 4pc?
Pound holds slightly up
The pound is still hugely volatile today, with the most solid bit of news to cling on to being European Council President Donald Tusks claim that we should know what is going on some time between roughly 9pm and 10pm (potentially bad news for anyone who wants to make a newspaper tonight).
SpreadExs Connor Campbell says:

Lets be clear, there is still a huge amount of uncertainty surrounding what is going on Brexit-wise not least because any agreement between the UK and EU still would need to get past some rather substantial parliamentary blockades.
However, most of the noise being made at the moment is positive. Donald Tusk claimed that everything should be clear in seven to eight hours, while Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar reiterated his belief that an agreement may be possible, even if it requires an extension past October 31to be fully worked out. The DUP remain one of the key question marks, especially since Arlene Foster denied the party had accepted the latest proposals around 2pm, as do the hardest of the Tory Brexiters.
German conservatives entrench dedication to black zero
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Anyone hoping for a new, fiscally-interventionist Bundestag might have to accept a bit of disappointment: the countrys ruling conservatives have reaffirmed their dedication to black zero a balanced budget. Reuters reports:

The Union (party) stance is clear: We stick to the black zero, Chancellor Merkels chief budget lawmaker Eckhardt Rehberg said after Bloomberg reported that the Chancellors Christian Democrats were softening their opposition to fiscal stimulus measures.
Germanys economic institutes earlier this month called on Berlin to ditch the black zero if the growth outlook for Europes largest economy should deteriorate further.
German GDP
Primark: Dont buy our products on Amazon
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

A shopper carrying a Primark bag

Simon Dawson/Bloomberg
Primark has urged shoppers to avoid buying its wares on Amazon after it emerged that some of its Harry Potter and Disney themed products are being sold for ramped-up prices, my colleague Laura Onita reports. She writes:

The discount retailer does not sell online. However, third party sellers, who typically buy items in bulk and then sell them for a profit, have started flogging Primark products on the platform.
A Primark spokesperson said: We do not have a commercial partnership with Amazon and any Primark products which appear on the site are being re-sold by third parties, at higher prices. We encourage our customers to visit us in our stores to find the best value.
A Primark Harry Potter Gryffindor beanie is being sold for ?9.99, while Minnie Mickey Mouse socks are ?9.95.
Read more here:Primark warns shoppers not to buy its wares on Amazon
US retail sales fall for first time in seven months
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

A shopper looks at turkeys in a Walmart

Kamil Krzaczynski/REUTERS
Retail sales in the US fell for the first time in seven months, raising worries about whether the strength of consumer demand might be waning.
That fall was unexpected, and suggests cracks may be appearing in a key pillar of the US economy, and may add to calls for a rate cut. My colleague Tom Rees reports:

Are American shoppers starting to buckle as the global slowdown finally reaches the countrys shores? Retail sales suffered a shock 0.4pc month-on-month tumble in September, stoking fears that crucial US consumers are tightening their belts as confidence is sapped by the trade war and slowing growth.
It is difficult to understate how important US shoppers are to growth with consumer spending accounting for 70pc of the worlds biggest economy. ING economist James Knightley says the sinking sales boosts the case for a third interest rate cut at the Federal Reserve. He explains:
Given this growth backdrop and the fact recent inflation indicators show signs of softening and the University of Michigan consumer inflation expectations series hit an all-time low, the Federal Reserve will be increasingly nervous about hitting its inflation target.

Capital Economics Andrew Pierce adds:

Overall, the retail sales figures support our view that economic growth is slowing we expect a further slowdown to 1.0pcannualised in the fourth quarter, ultimately prompting the Fed to cut rates by 25bp one more time at its December meeting.
One way of looking at todays Brexit headline shifts...
Currency markets seem to think @tconnellyRTE is twice as credible as @DUPleader. Pound jumped 0.8% following Connelly's tweet, but only dropped 0.4% after Foster's denial. Peter Thal Larsen (@peter_tl) October 16, 2019
IMF warns of $19 trillion corporate debt pile
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

New International Monetary Fund managing director Kristalina Georgieva

A second economic punch from the IMF after yesterdays growth predictions: the group has warned a$19 trillion corporate debt mountain built up by reckless lenders seeking higher returns threatens to topple over and deepen the next recession.
My colleague Tom Rees reports:

The global lender of last resort sounded the alarm on a boom in corporate lending in the US and China, withdebt classified as high-risk accounting for almost half of the market in the worlds two biggest economies.
The IMF said in its Global Financial Stability Report that in eight major economiesincluding the UK, debt-at-risk ormoney owed by companieswhich cannot cover the interest payments with profits would hit $19 trillion in the next downturn, or 40pc of the total amount owed by businesses.
Leveraged loans have exploded
Read more here:IMF sounds alarm over $19 trillion corporate debt mountain
Arlene Foster strikes back...
The DUP leader has responded directly that RTE report, labelling itnonsense tensions seem to be spilling over slightly.
'EU sources' are talking nonsense. Discussions continue. Needs to be a sensible deal which unionists and nationalists can support. Arlene Foster (@DUPleader) October 16, 2019
That has a knocked the pound back down a bit, though it is still up on the day currently.
Grant Shapps: Northern Rail could be nationalised
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

A Northern Rail train

Danny Lawson/PA
The government has told Northern (aka Arriva) to submit proposals on how it can make its service better, or face losing its role operating the northern rail franchise.
Speaking to the Transport Select Committee, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps confirmed he is looking at whether management of much of the norths rail systems should enter public hands.
He said that he had also written to theOperator of Last Resort (OLR), which would takeover if Northern lost the franchise.
Northern Rails passenger numbers have fallen after it made error introducing a new timetable last year.
Mr Shapps told MP writing to the company was a first step.
We had a hugely wide-ranging session with the Secretary of State for @transportgovuk this morning, covering roads, rail, aviation, Brexit, taxis, buses, cycling, high-speed rail, e-scooters and much more. ????????????

? Watch the session back here: Transport Committee (@CommonsTrans) October 16, 2019
Pound leaps after report says main stumbling block to Brexit deal is gone
RTEs Tony Connelly tweets:
BREAKING: two senior EU sources say the main stumbling block to a deal has been removed with the DUP accepting the latest proposals on consent... Optimism a deal can now be done... Tony Connelly (@tconnellyRTE) October 16, 2019
That has sent the pound back a four-month high against the dollar, and five-month high against the euro:
Second Woodford firm suspended
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Neil Woodford's Income Focus Fund has also been closed to redemptions by investors

Jeff Gilbert
Sorry for not having brought you this one sooner in among this mornings Brexit talk spasms, another of Neil Woodfordsfunds was closed to investors.
My colleague Harriet Russell reports:

Savers were blocked from pulling their nest eggs out of Mr Woodfords Income Focus Fund by corporate supervisor Link, which has placed the fund under a rolling 28-day suspension, matching terms applied to the Woodford Equity Income Fund earlier this year.
Link has vowed to update investors within the next two weeks on plans for the fund. It has the power to appoint a new manager, transfer the assets into a different fund or wind it down altogether.
Read more here:Second Woodford fund is suspended following investment firms collapse
The demise of Woodford: where did it all go so wrong?
Round-up: Crisps are getting more expensive, Asos shares back in fashion, rare disease drug firm raises $56m
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Bad news for fried potato lovers out there

Gareth Fuller/PA
Here are some of the days biggest stories:
Petrol gets cheaper but the price of crisps is going up:Petrol prices fell in September despite turmoil in the global oil markets, helping to keep a lid on living expenses and support the economy although the cost of crisps ticked up.
Rare disease drug firm Healx founded by Viagra creator raises $56m:A rare disease drugs firmco-founded by the discoverer of Viagra has raised $56m (?44m) to use artificial intelligence for findingnew medicines.
Asos shares back in style despite plunging profits:The boss of Asos vowed to stay on despite a significant drop in profits as the online fashion giantshowedsigns of recovery after two profit warnings.
Auto Trader dips amid weak motor sales figures
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Second-hand car pricesprices fell by 1.4pc between August and September

Jamie McDonald/Getty
Car-selling site Autotrader is one of the biggest fallers on the FTSE 100 today, down around 3pc currently.
Its price has tended to move quite strongly on Brexit news (presumably, sales are expected to increase once Brexit uncertainty has been lifted).
There are a couple of other factorsthough: this mornings inflation figures suggested softness in the second-hand car markets (where prices fell by 1.4pc between August and September compared with a rise of 1.4pc a year ago), and the Financial Conduct Authoritys plans to crack down on unfair car finance loan commissions, announced yesterday.
Liberum analysts were bullish on Autotrader in a note two days ago, writing:

There has been some concern recently over AutoTraders stock levels and this had, pre-Fridays bounce on positive Brexit news, impacted the shares. However, we think the concerns are overdone and expect the company to reiterate at its interims on November 7th that the FY is on track.
Brexit buzz
An assortment of smoke colours are emerging from Brussels and Westminster, none of them white just yet risky business for any spot traders riding the latest headlines.
NEW: Senior EU diplomat says now too late to give formal approval to Brexit deal at Summit. Adam Parsons (@adamparsons) October 16, 2019
New from lobby: Cabinet now meeting at 2.30pm rather than 4pm. No 10 says not to read too much into this - PM and others have "very busy diaries today, this is the time that best fits" Emily Ashton (@elashton) October 16, 2019
Cabinet meeting brought forward to 2.30pm now rather than late afternoon. Another sign it will no longer be asked to sign off any deal. Tom Newton Dunn (@tnewtondunn) October 16, 2019
DUP back in .... Laura Kuenssberg (@bbclaurak) October 16, 2019
RTE: Barnier says deal may be done today
The pound has pushed back up again, following a series of tweets from RTEs Tony Connelly:
2/ However, there still outstanding issues, so this could go right to the wire. Tony Connelly (@tconnellyRTE) October 16, 2019
He reports VAT, consent mechanisms and level playing field provisions are all causing issues within talks.
7/ The meeting of EU ambassadors, whom Barnier will brief, is still scheduled for 14hr CET, suggesting that the timings are still on course Tony Connelly (@tconnellyRTE) October 16, 2019
The pound was briefly up on the day in the wake of Mr Connellys first tweet, but is now hovering slightly down.
Huawei revenue jumps after solid phone sales
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

A staff member is seen inside a Huawei retail store in Shanghai

Chinese technology group Huawei haslifted its revenue by over 24pc to 610.8bn yuan (?67.5bn) in the first three quarters of the year despite intense trading pressure from the US, reports Natasha Bernal. She writes:

Huawei said it has signed more than 60 commercial contracts for 5G telecom networks with leading global carriers, half of which are with European customers building ultra-fast fifth generation systems.
The companysnet profit margin grew by8.7pc during the period.
Several 5G networks in the UK have launched with Huawei technology in the last few months, despiteconcerns expressed by MPs over national security.
Smartphone shipments Q2 2019
Read more here:Huaweis revenue jumps 24pc as it shrugs off spying claims to sell more phones
Technology Intelligence newsletter - UK
Heres how markets look
Thinks are pretty downbeat across Europe, with the latest lines on the wires suggesting Brexit talks are at an impasse.
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Bloomberg TV
Competition watchdog sets December 11 deadline for Deliveroo decision
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

A Deliveroo rider makes a food delivery

Jack Taylor/Getty
The Competition & Markets Authority has set a December 11 deadline to decide whether to launch a full-blown probe into Amazons plans to invest $575m into delivery firm Deliveroo.
Until then, it will determine whether the investment might lead to a substantial lessening of competition in the food delivery sector.
Heres more:Amazon under fire over $575m deal with Deliveroo
FTSE 250 losses pass 1pc, pound drops sharply against dollar and euro
The Brexit wobbles are continuing, with two chunky downwards twitches since trading opened this morning. The pound fell as much as 1pc against the euro and dollar a few minutes ago, though it pulled back quite quickly from those drops.
The FTSE 250, however, is having a worse day. After standing out yesterday amid high investor spirits, it is now off about 1pc as sentiment worsens.
Reaction: The link between unemployment and inflation in the UK is broken
Heres some reaction to this mornings headline CPI inflation figures. Capital Economics Andrew Wishart called them surprisingly subdued, writing:

Unchanged CPI inflation of 1.7pcin September was weaker than either we or the consensus had forecast (consensus 1.8pc) as falls in utilities and transport inflation offset a rebound in services inflation.
Indeed, services inflation returned to 2.5pc after dropping to 2.2pc in August, suggesting that was indeed a one-off. But falls in inflation in the transport category, from 1.4pc to 0.6pc, and housing and utility price inflation, from 2.4pc to 2.0pcoffset this. The fall in transport inflation was largely due to a fall in inflation in second-hand car prices, consistent with consumers having held off big ticket purchases while Brexit uncertainty is at its highest.

Erik Norlandfrom CME Group adds:

UK inflation came in below consensus at 1.7pc YoY for September. This, combined with the soft labour market data yesterday, should bias the BoE towards easing policy in coming months.
UK consumers might see a small uptick in inflation later this year owing to the weakening of the pound over the summer. This could add perhaps 0.20.3pcto inflation late this year or early next year. Even so, it would be below the BoEs target and any bump in inflation could quickly disappear if the pound rebounds if, and when, a solution is found for Brexit.
Finally, it is remarkable how low inflation is despite sub-4pc unemployment. This indicates that the link between unemployment and inflation in the UK is broken and that the BoE could probably allow unemployment to fall significantly further before wage pressures begin to cause inflation. This phenomenon is not unique to the UK but appears throughout Northern Europe, the US and Japan as well.
House price rise beats expectations, appears steady
The other big bit of data from the ONS today: house prices rose more than expected in August despite the gloom and uncertainty, increasing by 1.3pc.
The ONS says:

Average house prices in the UK increased by 1.3pc in the year to August 2019, up from 0.8pc in July 2019but remain below the increases seen this time last year. Over the past three years, there has been a general slowdown in UK house price growth, driven mainly by a slowdown in the south and east of England.
The lowest annual growth was in London, where prices fell by 1.4pc over the year to August 2019, followed by the South East where prices fell by 0.6pc over the year.

Breaking the UK down by countries, ENglish house prices remain the highest:
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

On a regional level, the North East was the English region with the highest annual house price growth, with prices increasing by 3.3pcin the year to August 2019:
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Transport ceases to be large contributor to inflation rate
Heres more from the ONS:

The contribution from transport has fallen since April 2019 meaning it no longer provides one of the larger contributions to the CPIH 12-month inflation rate. Having fallen to 0.07 percentage points, the contribution in September 2019 is practically one-tenth of the 0.68 percentage point contribution transport had in September 2018. Within transport, the contribution from motor fuels in September is negative for the second month in a row, reflecting a fall in price of 2.1pc on the year.
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

No change in CPI inflation - 1.7%y/y in September. Core inflation (excl.'s food & fuel) did tick up from 1.5%y/y to 1.7%y/y. Main downward push came from motor fuels, main upward push from household goods, hotels & rec. & culture goods. RPI fell from 2.8%y/y to 2.4%y/y. Rupert Seggins (@Rupert_Seggins) October 16, 2019
Furniture prices offset falling fuel prices
Heres what the Office for National Statistics has to say about those numbers:
The Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers housing costs (CPIH) 12-month inflation rate was 1.7pc in September 2019, unchanged from August 2019.
The largest downward contributions to change in the CPIH 12-month inflation rate, between August and September 2019, came from motor fuels, second-hand cars, and electricity, gas and other fuels.
These downward movements were offset by upward movements from furniture, household appliances, hotel overnight stays, and from recreation and culture items.
The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) 12-month inflation rate was 1.7pcin September 2019, unchanged from August 2019.
The CPIH 12-month rate was unchanged in September 2019 at 1.7% Office for National Statistics (@ONS) October 16, 2019
Correction: Apologies, I misread the core and headline figures initially headline CPI was flat at 1.7pc, while core rose to 1.7pc from 1.5pc.I have corrected my previous post.
Break: UK inflation stays at 1.7pc
Just in: UK headline consumer price index inflation stayed at1.7pc in September.
The Bank of Englands target is 2pc.
More follows...
Rio Tintos iron ore business bounces back
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

The miner maintained its iron ore shipment forecast for the year at between 320m and 330m tonnes

Aaron Bunch/Getty
Shares in Rio Tinto are down slightly this morning, despite the company saying itsiron ore shipments rose by 5pc in the third quarter, buoyed by rising demand from Chinese steelmakers.
The London-listed miner, which is part of the FTSE 100 index, said it had recovered from problems at one of its key Australian mining locations, after an operational error earlier this year led to the overproduction of low-grade material.
Its chief executive,Jean-Sebastien Jacques, said:

We have delivered improved production across the majority of our products in the third quarter, with a solid result at our Pilbara mines driving increased sales of iron ore into robust markets.
Is a Brexit deal coming?
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

The pounds volatility is at a three-year high
Its still a shaky time to be trading the pound, with sterling volatility (implied by the cost of hedging against price movements) hitting a three-year high yesterday.
Traders (like the rest of us) will be watching for white smoke from Brussels today, but the latest word via Bloomberg is that UK officials are feeling downbeat, with the DUP resistingproposals that would see Northern Ireland left in a separate custom arrangement to the rest of the UK.
As a reminder, the Prime Minister faces a pretty major hurdle getting any agreed terms through Parliament, where his majority is shot:
The current state of the House of Commons
As ever, the Telegraphs hugelywell-informed Europe Editor Peter Foster has been breaking down the latest details. Heres an extract from a Twitter thread he wrote this morning:
It might also be worth considering that the history of UK-EU negotiations so far is a tale of big, headline promises....that bit by bit slump back to earth. Gravity takes over, in politics as well as trade. /6 Peter Foster (@pmdfoster) October 16, 2019
Here are the five key Brexit groups that Boris Johnson must win over to get a deal
Turkey bans short-selling in seven banks
From slightly earlier this morning: Turkey has banned short-selling in seven of its banks, include one that is the focus of a US fraud and money-laundering case.
Bloomberg reports:

The decision comes into effect on Wednesday, according to a statement. No information was given on when the ban would end. The ban also applies to short positions closed within the same day, Capital Markets Board said in a separate statement.
Turkey temporarily bans short-selling in 7 banks
?Including Halkbank (Down 7.2% at the open) against which the U.S. brought a criminal case for fraud and money laundering for allegedly violating Iran sanctions
?Bank index down 4% Fercan Yalinkilic (@FercanY) October 16, 2019
Asos shares jump most in seven months after beating earnings expectations
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

Asos models pose

David M. Benett/Getty
Shares in Asos are up just under 15pc currently, having gained as much as 21pc earlier its biggest intraday jump since March.
The online retailer beat City estimates for its profit, with figures RBC analysts deemed reassuring.
The online retailers profits slumped by more than two-thirds last year after restructuring costs and operational problems took their toll. But Nick Beighton, chief executive, insisted it had been a pivotalyear for the retailer, saying it had invested heavily in its business.
Markets in the red
London trading has been open for just under half an hour now, and the mood is fairly anxious. The FTSE 100 is flat, while the FTSE 250 seen as more exposed to Brexit risk is down a solid 0.63pc.
Woodford round-up
Pound swings as Brexit talks go down to the wire

My best years as a fund manager are still in
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