London stocks lower as Theresa May prepares for exit

Fiona Cincotta
By :  ,  Senior Market Analyst
The UK’s political tectonic plates are shifting and the country could have a new Prime Minister in less than a month after Theresa May agreed to discuss the timetable for her departure in early June. This coupled with increasing hostility from China in the wake of the US ban on Huawei and the ramp up in trade tariffs is keeping the FTSE firmly in the red.

Just Eat dropped to the bottom of the FTSE 100 after Amazon agreed to back rival Deliveroo with $575 million worth of funding. Smaller rivals were also hit as Amazon positions itself in the fast growing food delivery market.

Pound nudges lower with politics as the dominant driver

Currency moves are fairly delicate this morning with the pound slightly weaker against the dollar and the euro. The two main prompts for the decline came from data showing that car sales in Britain declined by over 4% in April compared with German car sales which were down 1.1%, and from unsuccessful domestic political wrangling.

European elections will inject more volatility into currency trading next week especially as polls show that the Liberal Democrats are in the lead to win the vote.

Oil firmer, possibly for months ahead

Brent crude is again flirting with the $73 mark this morning, trading up 0.37% since the market opened but just a touch below yesterday’s highs. The rising tensions in the Middle East and the drone attacks on Saudi facilities earlier this week are fueling a market which has already been rendered tighter than usual by sanctions on Venezuela and Iran.   

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