The US dollar hit a nine month high yesterday, which is often an indication of poor market sentiment as investors flock towards the familiar safe havens. The Great British Pound also hit lows not seen since last year's disastrous mini budget. The Japanese Yen has also suffered by weakening to the US Dollar, as many fear that officials may intervene in the currency market once again in an attempt to control inflation. A weaker currency can sometimes boost markets in the short run, but is rarely desired in the longer term by central banks.
The second largest retailer in the world, H&M (STO: HM-B) reported their profits for the last quarter, which showed a surprisingly positive outlook. Cost cuts, including the introduction of charging shoppers for their returns, have helped to boost profits and improve their outlook for the last quarter of 2023. The share price rose by 2.18% as markets were opening in response to the good news.
The ongoing tale of Evergrande (HKG:3333) has continued, as it has emerged that the CEO of the company, Hui Ka Yan, has been put under police control. This does not necessarily mean that he will be arrested or charged with any crimes. However, it does add to the mounting fears that investors have for the company, as the risk of them defaulting and turning to liquidation continues to climb. The share price fell a further 19% on the back of the news just this morning.
Sources: Bloomberg, Reuters, AJ Bell, Financial Times, Nasdaq, Yahoo Finance