FTSE 100 Index Stays Steady Amid Market Shifts

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Bloomberg – On Tuesday, the FTSE 100 index in United Kingdom closed almost unchanged at 7,546, hovering near its highest point in nearly two months. The day started with promise as industrial mining stocks surged, but these gains couldn’t last. Meanwhile, the financial world was digesting the UK’s latest employment data. The jobless rate stayed at 4.2% for the fifth month in a row. Although wages are still growing at a notable pace, this growth slowed down more than it has in almost two years.

Investors, looking ahead, are betting on the Bank of England (BoE) to reduce interest rates as soon as June. This expectation comes even before the US Federal Reserve’s anticipated rate cut. Big names like BP and Shell didn’t fare well in the market, with their values dropping significantly. This was partly due to Brent crude oil prices falling by 3.5%, spurred by fears of low energy demand and high supply into the next year.

In corporate news, Anglo American’s shares dropped by 4% amidst takeover speculation. Another notable move was Hargreaves Landsdown’s 6% fall, following concerns from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) about customer interest earnings on cash balances. On a brighter note, Rolls Royce saw its shares jump nearly 3%, thanks to a rating upgrade from Fitch.