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LONDON MARKETS: London Markets Rally After Lowest Unemployment In 45 Years

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05/14/2019 | 07:55am EDT

By Dave Morris

London equities were on a tear on the heels of Monday's sharp declines, as the U.K. reported the lowest unemployment figures in 45 years.

How did markets perform?

The U.K.'s FTSE 100 jumped 0.9% to 7,225.3 on Tuesday, more than erasing Monday's loss of 0.6%.

The pound was 0.1% lower at $1.2949. On Monday it was down 0.4%.

What's moving the markets?

The U.K.'s unemployment rate fell to its lowest level since 1974 . The jobless rate in the first quarter of 2019 was 3.8% according to the Office for National Statistics, which was less than predicted at 3.9%.

There was little optimism on U.S.-China trade talks, after China announced up to $60 billion in fresh tariffs in retaliation for those announced by U.S. President Donald Trump earlier this month. Trump said that the success or failure of the talks could be assessed in three to four weeks, though investors may interpret the statement as an attempt to jawbone the market back higher.

Which stocks are active?

Metro Bank shares rebounded 6.5%. They plunged nearly 11% Monday after the FT reported the challenger bank was planning to sell over GBP1 billion worth of the loan book (https://www.ft.com/content/0cf6b3a0-7255-11e9-bf5c-6eeb837566c5) at the center of controversy over an accounting error. The shares remain down 70% on the year.

Vodafone Group was down after loss as its dividend cut, which was expected after media reports indicated it could be slashed by 50%, came in at 40% instead . Shares swooned 5.2% Monday, and dipped 1.3% Tuesday.

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
CHALLENGER LTD -2.30% 8.06 End-of-day quote.-15.07%
FTSE 100 INDEX 0.28% 7234.11 End-of-day quote.0.00%
METRO BANK PLC -2.59% 752 Delayed Quote.-55.58%
VODAFONE GROUP 2.25% 126.1 Delayed Quote.-17.53%
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