Global markets roundup, 7 May

• FTSE 100 down 0.4% to 6,798

• Gold down 0.17% to $1,308.04/oz

• £/$ – 1.6975

The FTSE 100 fell back yesterday, slipping 0.4% to close at 6,798.

Barclays was the worst performer, falling 5.2% after reporting a big fall in profits. Drugmakers Shire and AstraZeneca were also deep in the red, down 3.1% and 2.7% respectively.

In Europe yesterday, the Paris CAC 40 fell 34 points to 4,428, and the German Xetra Dax fell 62 points to 9,467.

In the US yesterday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.8% to 16,401, the S&P 500 fell 0.9% to 1,867, and the Nasdaq Composite slid 1.4% to close at 4,080.

Overnight in Japan, the Nikkei 225 slumped 2.9% to 14,033 and the broader Topix slid 2.6% to 1,152. And in China, the Shanghai Composite and the CSI 300 each fell 0.9% to 2,010 and 2,137 respectively.

Brent spot was trading at $107.32 early today, and in New York, crude oil was at $100.19. Spot gold was trading at $1,313 an ounce, silver was at $19.70 and platinum was at $1,447.

In the forex markets this morning, sterling was trading against the US dollar at 1.6978 and against the euro at 1.2187. The dollar was trading at 0.7178 against the euro and 101.53 against the Japanese yen.

And today, Sainsbury’s reported record annual profits. In the year to 15 March, pre-tax profits rose by 16.3% to £898m. Overall sales grew by 2.7%, while sales at its convenience stores were up by 19%, and online sales rose by 12%.

• Stay up to date with MoneyWeek: Follow us on TwitterFacebook and Google+




Which investment platform?

When it comes to buying shares and funds, there are several investment platforms and brokers to choose from. They all offer various fee structures to suit individual investing habits.
Find out which one is best for you.


6 May 1840: the launch of the Penny Black stamp 


Britain's postal system underwent radical reform on this day in 1840, with the introduction of the Universal Penny Post and the Penny Black stamp.

The Kids' Portfolio: the four best funds to buy for your children

Investing for your children's long-term future is an excellent idea. But what should you buy? The Kids' Portfolio is a simple collection of four funds intended to be tucked away for 20 to 40 years.