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Wall Street struggles as FTSE continues its strong start to the year

FTSE  Screens on the trading floor at New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) display the Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell during a news conference after the Federal Reserve announced interest rates will raise half a percentage point, in New York City, U.S., December 14, 2022. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Wall Street struggled as traders feared Fed’s hawkish stance but the FTSE 100 closed in positive territory. Photo: Andrew Kelly/Reuters

The FTSE 100 has managed to bounce back unlike European and US stocks, as the global rally appears to be loosing steam.

The FTSE 100 (^FTSE) finished in an upbeat mood, rising 0.85%% to close at 7,650points, while the CAC 40 (^FCHI) in Paris lost 0.12% to 6,768 points. In Germany, the DAX (^GDAXI) retreated 0.25% to 14,454.

London's blue-chip index was driven by retailers following upbeat trading statements from Next (NXT.L), B&M (BME.L) and Greggs (GRG.L).

Next was the biggest riser of the blue-chip index, jumping 7.51% after it reported better-than-expected Christmas sales, up 4.8%, which compared to previous guidance for a fall of 2%.

Read more: Greggs sales jump 23% despite repeated price increases

In Wall Street, stocks were lower after further evidence of a strong labour market spurred worries that the Federal Reserve will remain hawkish in its policy to tackle high inflation.

The Dow Jones (^DJI) slipped 1.22% to 32,862 points. The S&P 500 (^GSPC) fell 1.14% to 3,809 points and the tech-heavy NASDAQ (^IXIC) lost 1.22% to 10,331.

Federal Open Market Committee minutes released Wednesday showed the committee expects growth this year to be below trend, but that is needed to bring supply and demand into balance and reduce inflationary pressures.

Meanwhile, Brent crude (BZ=F) has started to recover, with oil prices jumping 1.71% to around $79/barrel, despite demand concerns continuing to hang over the market.

“Warning signs of global recession, China’s lacklustre recovery with surging COVID-19 cases, renewed strength in the US dollar and dampened risk sentiment are all catalysts keeping oil prices in check overnight,” said Yeap Jun Rong, market analyst at IG, in a note.

Read more: More UK retailers charging fees to return items bought online

In Asia, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 (^N225) gained 0.40% to close at 25,820 while the Hang Seng (^HSI) in Hong Kong climbed 1.14% to 21,029. The Shanghai Composite (000001.SS) climbed 1.01% to 3,155 points.

Watch: Markets have been ‘detached from reality for a very long time’ amid Fed rate hikes: Strategist