Markets are wavering today as investors suffer a pang of existential doubt. Renewed COVID-19 fears are chiefly to blame (Germany’s R number has almost tripled) but there are plenty of other triggers. In Germany, Wirecard says the missing €1.9bn might not exist, while Lufthansa’s survival is far from certain.
More fundamentally, JPMorgan casts doubt over recent share price gains because liquidity ‘cannot paper over specific weaknesses indefinitely’. Speaking of which, a ‘taper tantrum’ could be on the way as BoE governor Andrew Bailey signals that QE will be withdrawn before raising interest rates.
Demand doubts sees oil prices slip lower, while investors managing £1.8tn cast grave doubt over the long-term value of fossil fuel assets. Analysts are considering unconventional indicators such as social distancing and hospitalisations to predict where interest-rate markets are headed, while medics in the EU look to military-level tactics as they brace for a second wave.
There are worries, too, for Pentland Group with Go Outdoors close to collapse and 2,400 jobs under threat. Perhaps selling celebrity memorabilia is a better business model for the next few months? Not likely when the rich have slashed their spending, inadvertently increasing worries for the poor.
On a day like today we’ll take success where we can find it. UK fintech Checkout.com, valued at £5.5bn, is eyeing a US listing. And biological engineering could create the next industrial revolution. They say even architecture is going to change in response to COVID-19. Perhaps we’ll find out how as Tencent builds a Monaco-sized city of the future in Shenzhen.
But we’ll leave you on the really big doubt of today – were TikTokkers and K-pop fans really behind Donald’s disappointing disaster?
The Stream Team