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Friday,20 March 2020 at 08:53

UK and European markets opened sharply higher after a volatile week, as central banks and governments around the world adopt a “whatever it takes” approach to mitigating the economic hit from the coronavirus pandemic. 

Stocks in Asia Pacific rose as China kept its loan prime rates unchanged. 

The U.S. dollar was headed for its biggest weekly gain since the 2008 global financial crisis with the coronavirus pandemic driving a dash for cash. 

U.S. crude oil prices rose after U.S. President Donald Trump hinted he may intervene in the price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia at an “appropriate time”. 

Gold prices rose amid fears over the economic hit from the coronavirus, but bullion was headed for a second weekly drop as investors sold the metal to meet margin calls in other assets. 

In corporate news, Wetherspoons cancelled its interim dividend and warned on full year profits as the coronavirus and government advice to stay away from pubs and restaurants hit current sales. 

Retailer Marks & Spencer scrapped its dividend as it warned that trading in its clothing, home and international businesses is likely to be "severely impacted" by Covid-19 in the next nine to 12 months.

08:37 GMT
FTSE 100 5,284 +2.59%
FTSE 250 13,457 +4.89%
DAX 9,159 +6.38%
the close
Dow Jones 20,087 +0.95%
S&P 500 2,409 +0.47%
NASDAQ 7,150 +2.30%
Fixed Income
UK 10-YR YIELD 0.58
Exchange Rates
GBP/USD 1.184
GBP/EUR 1.097
Gold $1,508 +2.57%
Brent $30.30 +7.78%
This report has been prepared for private circulation. The inclusion of securities within this report does not necessarily imply their suitability for individual portfolios or situations in respect of which further advice should be sought. Information contained in this report has been compiled from sources believed to be reliable but is not warranted to be accurate or complete.
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