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FTSE 100 looks set to edge up after volatile end to the trading month

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The FTSE looks set to open its account in positive territory after a horrendous end to the trading week for the UK blue-chip stocks index.

It is now below its opening level for 2021 with the hope around a vaccine, the new presidential era and US fiscal stimulus having dissipated in a rough few days for investors.

In Asia, stocks moved higher Monday, though China’s purchasing manager’s data, while robust, was robust enough to move the dial.

After GameStop and AMC retail activity ahead of the US open appeared to be focused on silver, with the price of the precious metal up just under 5%.

Gold, meanwhile, lacked the same momentum as it nudged up 0.93% but stalled below US$1,900 an ounce.

The corporate news agenda here in the UK looks likely to be dominated by big oil and big pharma with updates from BP (LON:BP.) and GlaxoSmithKline (LON:GSK) this week.

In the US, reporting season is still in full swing. Alphabet (LON:GOOG), the parent company of Google, and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) are the stand-outs from a packed roster.

Around the markets

  • Pound US$1.3743 (+0.26)
  • Bitcoin US$33,861.79 (+0.44%)
  • Gold US$1,867.40 (+0.93%)       
  • Brent crude US$ 55.36 (+0.53%)

6.45 am: Early Markets: Asia / Australia

Stocks in Asia-Pacific were higher today as Chinese manufacturing data showed growth slowing in January, with the Caixin/Markit manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index coming in at 51.5, compared to 51.9 in December.

South Korea’s Kospi was among the biggest gainers regionally as it jumped 2.70% with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index following closely with a 2.36% surge.

Mainland Chinese stocks were also higher with the Shanghai composite up 0.59%.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 rose 1.55% while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 closed 0.84% higher.

READ OUR ASX REPORT HERE

Proactive Australia news:

Pan Asia Metals Limited (ASX:PAM) has completed drilling the first-ever hole at the highly prospective Bang I Tum prospect within Reung Kiet Lithium Project (RKLP) in southern Thailand.

Matador Mining Ltd (ASX:MZZ) hits 18 metres at 11 g/t gold and 19 metres at 4.6 g/t gold following having received exploration drill results at the Cape Ray Gold Project in Newfoundland, Canada.

Kingwest Resources Ltd (ASX:KWR) has received the first assays from its inaugural aircore drilling program at the highly prospective Goongarrie Gold Project (GGP) in Western Australia.

Musgrave Minerals Ltd (ASX:MGV) (FRA:6MU) has reported strong reverse circulation (RC) assay results from the newly discovered White Heat prospect on its 100%-owned ground at its flagship Cue Gold Project in Western Australia’s Murchison district.

Havilah Resources Ltd (ASX:HAV) (FRA:FWL) has reported further economic-grade copper and gold drilling results in the last three reverse circulation (RC) drill holes from its 2020 West Kalkaroo drilling campaign.

Jinadalee Resources Ltd (ASX:JRL) has received the first assay results from 10 of 15 drill holes completed in December 2020, which have intersected substantial thickness of the flat-lying sediments hosting lithium mineralisation at the McDermitt Project in Utah, US.

K2fly Ltd (ASX:K2F) is acquiring the business assets associated with ‘Decipher for Mining’ (Decipher) from CSBP Ltd (CSBP) and Wesfarmers Chemicals, Energy & Fertilisers Ltd (WesCEF) for 3.7 million in shares, plus performance shares.

Lotus Resources Ltd (ASX:LOT) has found high-grade rare earth oxide (REO) material up to 16% total REO and 3.4% critical REO at the Milenje Hills prospect, 2 kilometres from its Kayelekera Uranium Mine in Malawi, after a preliminary low-cost exploration program.

Creso Pharma Ltd (ASX:CPH) (FRA:1X8) (OTCMKTS:COPHF) has welcomed the introduction of over-the-counter sales of low-dose cannabidiol (CBD) products in Australian pharmacies from 1 February 2021.

Great Southern Mining Ltd (ASX:GSN) has cemented its position as a major gold explorer and developer in the Laverton Goldfields in Western Australia after it secured an exclusive, irrevocable option over three large exploration license applications around its Cox’s Find Gold Project in the Laverton region, Western Australia.

Castillo Copper appoints two key service providers to accelerate the development at the Big One Depo

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