FTSE spikes as remain-friendly polls cheer markets

Added 20th June 2016

The FTSE 100 climbed 2.6% by mid-morning on Monday following the release of remain-friendly referendum polls over the weekend.

FTSE spikes as remain-friendly polls cheer markets

The strong session for the FTSE 100 followed on from gains made on Friday to leave the index comfortably clear of 6000 at 6180. The FTSE 250 was up 2.5% to 16,841.

Sterling also rallied for the same reasons, climbing nearly 2% against the greenback to $1.46.

Three new opinion polls were released on Sunday with one showing leave and remain level, one giving a one point lead for remain and the other a two point lead for remain.

These three went against the recent trend of increasingly large leads for the leave campaign, with multiple polls conducted over the preceding week showing leave with a lead of between 5 and 10 points.

As was the case on Friday, financials demonstrated they are particularly sensitive to the fluctuations in perceived Brexit sentiment.

Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays and Lloyds Banking Group all put on more than 5%. Again, in continuation of Friday’s trading housebuilders Barratt and Taylor Wimpey climbed significantly.  

“Waves from the Brexit vote are buffeting the UK stock market, tossing it up and down as the opinion polls shift this way and that,” said Laith Khalaf, senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown. “Until the vote is over we can expect more price swings, as markets struggle to price in a unique event that carries with it such a high degree of uncertainty.”

Khalaf also pointed out that today’s market movements provide an insight into which stocks are likely to move the most on Friday.

“If you want to get an idea of what stocks will do well in the event of a vote to stay in the UK, it’s worth taking a look at today’s FTSE leader board,” he said. “The market has clearly identified financials and house builders as beneficiaries of a vote to remain in the UK, with a sterling rally also indicating how the currency might move if we vote to remain in Europe.”

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Alex Sebastian

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Alex joined Portfolio Adviser in April 2014 and has been a financial journalist since 2008. He has previously held editorial positions at the Financial Times Group and Euromoney Institutional Investor. Alex is NCTJ qualified and has a degree in economics from the University of Sussex.



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