Today’s mood – A fragile flicker

Published on 14-09-2020 12:30:00

A frisson of excitement has replaced the jitters of the last fortnight, with early trading sending  FTSE 100 to a three-week high before heading into negative territory.

A twinkle of deal-making glitter is seeing Nvidia pay $40bn for Britain’s ARM. Oracle looks to have won the battle for TikTok’s US app and two American US drugs groups are also combining.

A rekindling of COVID-19 hope is also spreading, as AstraZeneca’s vaccine trial resumes. There’s a glimmer of light in the US employment market too as Amazon creates up to 100,000 new jobs.

Japan is about to get a new leader, while China and the EU are trying to shine a way for future relations at a video-summit.

In the UK, an aptly-named musical is  to tread the boards at theatres again, though there remain  fears that the new ‘rule of six’ won’t work elsewhere.

The sparks are fragile, of course. COVID-19 has just had a record day for new global infections, while Israel is to become the first nation to have a second lockdown.

Disharmony is increasing in Westminster as another former PM speaks out over Boris’s bill to break the Brexit divorce treaty. The motor industry is predicting a €110bn bill for a hard Brexit.

Other factors also risk prolonging the darkness. There may be up to 700,000 UK autumn job losses. In the US, a regulator is warning of the risks that climate change poses to the financial system.

Still, hope stirs in some unlikely quarters. Robots appear to be creating, rather than destroying, low-paid jobs in Europe.

Taiwan has reaped a $38bn windfall from America’s distrust of China. And if you find it tricky to speak slowly and clearly, there’s a new Japanese app that might be able to help.

Until tomorrow,
The Stream Team

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