The FTSE was once again the front-runner in a forgetful session

The FTSE was once again the front-runner in a forgetful session

Awaiting an eventful Friday, Thursday was almost an entirely stagnant session across global equities, with FTSE retaining its place at the top of the pile.

The Dow Jones sat shy of its all-time high mark and both the CAC and DAX didn’t move far off of their respective opening positions.

For the third day in a row, the FTSE saw the biggest gains, today lead by the continued slide of Sterling, and positive data posted by some of its largest-cap members.

Retail data was surprisingly positive, but investors wait with bated breath for Friday’s manufacturing results.

Speaking on the lack of market movements during the Thursday session, Spreadex Financial Analyst Connor Campbell commented:

“It was a forgettable session, the markets lacking direction as they wait for Friday’s manufacturing data.”

“Matching the inertia of its Eurozone peers, the Dow Jones did nothing after the bell. Opening flat, it sits at 29340 – one good session away from reclaiming its 29500-tickling all-time highs.”

“As mentioned, the Eurozone was devoid of drama this Thursday. The DAX shed a handful of points as it continued to lurk just under 13800, while the CAC was flat a bit above 6100.”

“The FTSE was the sole major index to push higher; then again, unlike the DAX and Dow, it is nowhere near its own record peak.”

“Adding 0.3%, the UK index touched 7480, boosted by the likes of Lloyds (LON:LLOY) and Smith & Nephew (LON:SN).”

The FTSE was also boosted by BAE Systems plc (LON:BA), which bounced over 3% on an 8.9% rise in year-on-year revenues.

“The real difference maker, however, was sterling’s latest slide. Despite a broadly positive week for data – Thursday saw a better than forecast swing in retail sales, from -0.5% to 0.9% month-on-month – the pound is having a bit of a nightmare.”

“Cable’s 0.3% drop pushed it to a near-3 month nadir of $1.2878, while a 0.5% fall against the euro took sterling to an 8-day low of €1.19045. The currency is afflicted by a variety of issues, from the upbeat tone of the ECB’s latest meeting minutes, to the dollar’s safe-haven appeal, to the pre-trade negotiations slanging match between the UK and EU.”