Global markets roundup, 24 March

• FTSE 100 up 0.2% to 6, 557

• Gold down 0.13% to $1,327.88/oz

• £/$ – 1.6504

The FTSE 100 ended the week in a positive mood, adding 0.2% to close at 6,557.

Utility stocks were among the best performers, with Centrica, Severn Trent and United Utilities up between 2.1% and 1.8%. Miners were also in demand,. But financial stocks continued to suffer from the post-Budget blues. Legal & General, Aberdeen Asset Management, Hargreaves Lansdown, and Aviva slid between 3.3% and 2.7%.

In Europe on Friday, the Paris CAC 40 rose eight points to 4,335 and the German Xetra Dax gained 46 points to 9,342.

In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.2% to 16,302, the S&P 500 lost 0.3% to 1,866, and the Nasdaq Composite slid 1% to 4,276.

Overnight in Japan, the Nikkei 225 rose 1.8% to 14,475, and the broader Topix added 1.5% to 1,163. And in China, the Shanghai Composite rose 0.9% to 2,066, and the CSI 300 added 0.8% to 2,176.

Brent spot was trading at $106.64 early today, and in New York, crude oil was at $99.51. Spot gold was trading at $1,323 an ounce, silver was at $20.15 and platinum was at $1,431.

In the forex markets this morning, sterling was trading against the US dollar at 1.6490 and against the euro at 1.1954. The dollar was trading at 0.7249 against the euro and 102.55 against the Japanese yen.

And in the UK, the Co-operative Bank has revealed that it needs to find another £400m after discovering a hole in its accounts. The bank said that the deficit, which relates to compensation for PPI and mortgage mis-selling, meant it would make a loss of between £1.2bn and £1.3bn for 2013.

Merryn

Claim 12 issues of MoneyWeek (plus much more) for just £12!

Let MoneyWeek show you how to profit, whatever the outcome of the upcoming general election.

Start your no-obligation trial today and get up to speed on:

  • The latest shifts in the economy…
  • The ongoing Brexit negotiations…
  • The new tax rules…
  • Trump’s protectionist policies…

Plus lots more.

We’ll show you what it all means for your money.

Plus, the moment you begin your trial, we’ll rush you over THREE free investment reports:

‘How to escape the most hated tax in Britain’: Inheritance tax hits many unsuspecting families. Our report tells how to pass on up to £2m of your money to your family without the taxman getting a look in.

‘How to profit from a Trump presidency’: The election of Donald Trump was a watershed moment for the US economy. This report details the sectors our analysts think will boom from Trump’s premiership, and gives specific investments you can buy to profit.

‘Best shares to watch in 2017’: Includes the transcript from our roundtable panel of investment professionals – and 12 tips they’re currently tipping. The report also analyses key assets, including property, oil and the countries whose stock markets currently offer the most value.