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The latest updates and articles from Arbuthnot Latham
It is the start of a new era in the US as Biden takes the presidency and has already reversed some Trump policies.
US politics continues to dominate the headlines, particularly Trump’s second impeachment, amid concern of further civil unrest ahead of next week’s presidential inauguration.
Market focus at the start of the year is on the US, with Biden gaining control of the Senate.
There appears to be some progress towards a Brexit agreement, though fisheries apparently remains unresolved.
The Prime Ministers meeting with the EU president clearly did not lead to any significant breakthrough in the Brexit negotiations, with Sunday the next major deadline and a no-deal increasingly likely.
Positive news on the vaccine has buoyed markets, with global stocks having their best month since 1988, and US equities in particular trading at record highs.
The UK Chancellor outlined the difficulties facing the economy this week, calling it the biggest economic hit for 300 years.
UK data this week has been relatively robust, with inflation nudging up to 0.7%, though still well below the Bank of England’s 2% target.
The initial reaction to Biden’s election victory has been a strong rally in global equity markets, and a general weakening of the US dollar.
Election week in the US has been tense, with the outcome still hanging on a knife edge and both sides now gearing up for legal action with the Trump campaign attempting to stop counts in battleground states.
In Europe, the alarming growth in the virus infection rate is dominating the market, with further lockdown measures adding to the economic damage and increasing government debt to record levels.
The virus infection rate is hitting new record highs across Europe, whilst US hospitalisations are at a 2-month high.
Ruth Lea CBE
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