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MARKET WRAP: FTSE edges lower, oil weakens, Dogecoin outperforms

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Economy1 hour ago (Dec 14, 2021 16:20)

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Key Points

FTSE 100 closing price of 7216.5 (-0.2%)
Ocado shares surge following trading update
Rentokil declines on US M&A
BT drops despite Drahi increased stake
GBP, USD higher ahead of central bank meetings
Oil lower on Omicron fears
Cryptos steady, Dogecoin outperforms on Musk tweet

By Samuel Indyk

Investing.com – The FTSE 100 edged lower on Tuesday although traded in a relatively narrow range ahead of the key central bank meetings later in the week from the Bank of England, Federal Reserve, and European Central Bank.

Ocado Group (LON:OCDO) shares outperformed despite a dip in revenue at its 50:50 joint venture with Marks and Spencer (LON:MKS), Ocado Retail. The underlying picture was broadly more positive with the number of active customers increasing by 22% over the quarter and average orders up 8.5%.

Rentokil Initial (LON:RTO) was the underperformer after the pest control firm announced a deal to buy US extermination company Terminix in a deal valued at $6.7 billion. The valuation represents a premium of 47% to Terminix’s closing price on Monday.

BT (LON:BT) was another company in the news after Altice boss Patrick Drahi raise his stake in the UK telecoms company to 18%. Nevertheless, shares in BT declined as Drahi reiterated that his firm was not planning a full takeover of BT. The UK government also appeared to fire a warning to Drahi that any potential takeover offer may struggle to get government approval.

“The government is committed to levelling up the country through digital infrastructure, and will not hesitate to act if required to protect our critical national telecoms infrastructure,” a spokesperson said.

The UK’s National Security & Investment Act is due to be enacted next month which would give the government the powers to block the deal.

GBP and USD both edged higher ahead of the central bank meetings this week. The Fed is widely expected to speed up the tapering of its asset purchase programme and PPI figures released today will do little to change that plan.

PPI increased 9.6% in November from a year earlier, the largest advance in the index since 2010. Core PPI increased by a record 7.7% from a year ago.

WTI and Brent crude futures both traded lower after the IEA warned that the Omicron variant could hamper the global recovery in oil demand.

“The surge in new Covid-19 cases is expected to temporarily slow, but not upend, the recovery in oil demand that is underway,” the agency said. “Due to new restrictions on international travel, we have revised down our global oil demand forecast for 2021 and 2022 by 100 kb/d on average, primarily to account for reduced jet fuel use.”

Most major cryptocurrencies were trading steady with Bitcoin hovering around $47,000. The meme-based coin Dogecoin outperformed after a tweet from Elon Musk. The Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO said that Tesla would accept Dogecoin from customers for some merchandise and “see how it goes”.

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MARKET WRAP: FTSE edges lower, oil weakens, Dogecoin outperforms

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UK medium-term inflation expectations joint-highest since 2013 – Citi/YouGov

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