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S&P 500 falls despite consumer confidence improving – 23rd February

Data released on Tuesday showed that consumer confidence in the United States was on the up, despite this indices fell for a second consecutive session.

The benchmark S&P 500 index fell lower today, dropping to an intraday low of 3807 earlier in the U.S. session.

Drops in the index come despite the Conference Board saying its consumer confidence index rose to a reading of 91.3 this month from 88.9 in January.

This increase in confidence comes as the U.S. continues to ramp up their vaccination program, as well as ongoing talks of further market stimulus.

Recent declines in the S&P 500 has seen the index lose most of its gains from February.

Boris lockdown plans boosts FTSE 100

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson last night laid out plans that could see the UK move enter a “new normal” by June 21st.

The Prime Minister, who described the plans as a “one-way road to freedom” stated that all, including nightclubs, restaurants, sport venues could be open by June.

London’s FTSE 100 responded to the news in positive fashion, with the index rising by 0.21% in today’s trading.

Despite the calls for hope and optimism, Boris always warned the nation to remain cautious in order to avoid any further setbacks.

The UK has now vaccinated over 18 million people with the first jab of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Fed will continue to support economy says Powell

Jerome Powell today reiterated that the Federal Reserve will continue to do its part in supporting the economy as it moves out of the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking in front of the Senate Banking Committee, the Fed Chair was asked about tools that could help the economy, he stated that,  “Monetary policy I would certainly agree is one of them, but still needs to be deployed to support the economy until it is more fully healed”.

Powell also commented that he believed interest rates could be kept at historical lows, until the Fed’s inflation target of 2% is reached.

Markets now wait to see if any further stimulus could impact the Fed’s position.

Source: CNBC Television

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Richard Branson

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