Mood – In search of certainty

Published on 09-07-2020 12:30:01

The bets have been laid; the strategies are in place.

Britain is telling its citizens to eat out to save the economy. The Chinese are buying stocks instead. Germany is reaping early dividends from targeting exports success, while Bolsonaro believes hydroxychloroquine can save his life, as well as the lives of thousands of other Brazilians.

Will any of these strategies work? The markets don’t know either, although gold is proving our man Charlie Gibson right again and the FTSE 250 seems to be buying into Rishi’s recipe for recovery.

UK public spending on COVID-19 has soared to £190bn but the housing market’s post-lockdown bounce might run out of steam. Boots is axeing 4,000 jobs, while John Lewis is putting 1,300 positions at risk with eight store closures.

Energy companies are being told to give cash to households, not shareholders. Rolls-Royce is warning that COVID has cost it £3bn and recovery may take seven years.

Nvidia has surpassed Intel as the largest US chip maker, but corporate America may have given up on R&D and Trump’s Tulsa rally may have helped the latest spike in US cases. Melania’s statue has been burnt in Slovenia, while US Post Office trucks also have a fire problem.

More positively, COVID-19 could see US health insurers post record results, while we have new research on bionic vision systems developer Pixium Vision, which has completed its latest fundraising.

But campaigners want Johnson & Johnson to halt sales of its baby powder, due to cancer concerns, while Vietnamese coffee growers might have a diphtheria problem.

There are other unanswered questions. Can Alibaba’s Ant get a $200bn IPO through in these conditions? Will the Indian army’s Facebook and Instagram ban work? Why has it taken up to now to have a black Batwoman? And why has no one ever seen a whale shark give birth?

But relax. Michel Barnier got a healthier meal in Downing Street last night. Shame it won’t qualify for the £10 rebate.

Until tomorrow,

The Stream Team

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