Consumer confidence data released in the U.S. helped the benchmark S&P 500 rally to a new all-time high on Tuesday’s trading session.

Figures released by the Conference Board today showed that its consumer confidence index rose to a reading of 89.3 in January from 87.1 in December.

This came as many had forecasted a reading of 89 in January, meaning that results were marginally better than expected.

The news helped the S&P 500 hit an intraday high of 3870, with many expecting further highs this week, with Microsoft and Apple releasing Q4 earnings over the next 36 hours.

British Unemployment highest in 5 years

Data from the United Kingdom today painted a grim picture of the British economy, with figures showing that unemployment had hit a 5 year high.

Britain’s unemployment rate rose to 5.0% in November, as the country once again entered lockdown restrictions in hope of containing the COVID-19 outbreak.

This is the first time since early 2016 figures were at this level, and many believe the unemployment rate may be higher, as lockdown restrictions have only worsened since November, as virus cases continue to grow.

Earlier this month the Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey stated that the unemployment rate was nearer 6.5%.

The FTSE 100 was ended the day down 0.11%.

IMF expecting more growth in 2021

The International Monetary Fund today revised its growth forecast for the year, stating that recovery could be better than initially expected.

It is now expecting the global economy to grow by 5.5% in 2021, which is a 0.3% increase from October’s forecasts.

The IMF’s Chief Economist Gita Gopinath added that, “Much now depends on the outcome of this race between a mutating virus and vaccines to end the pandemic, and on the ability of policies to provide effective support until that happens”.

Cases of the virus continue to rise, with new variants surfacing across the globe. Many now wait to see if the current vaccine will be effective with new mutations. 

Quote of the day – “The four most dangerous words in investing are: This time it’s different.”

Sir John Templeton

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Eliman Dambel

Senior Market Analyst