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FTSE rebound after Omicron crash a case study in market sentiment

FTSE rebound

If an economics A-level exam chose to cover the impact of sentiment on stock markets, the performance of the FTSE on Friday and Monday would tick all the boxes. It was the definitive case study, a text book example of sentiment-led volatility.

On Friday afternoon, the FTSE was pretty much flat on the canvas as traders globally went into panic mode as fears of a Covid variant that may be even worse than Delta took grip.

And then on Monday morning, as reports emerged that the Omicron virus may not be as virulent as some thought, the FTSE came out of its corner swinging like Jake LaMotta in a scene from Raging Bull.

Over the weekend, the markets ingested the positive statements made by scientists globally and on Monday morning the FTSE saw an immediate upwards swing.

For the time being at least, and we caveat this with the fact that things can change very quickly in the new pandemic world, traders have concluded that we have dodged Delta Part Deux.

Airline shares understandably had a particularly strong morning as at varying times on Friday it looked like travel restrictions could be imposed across the board.

Though some countries are introducing travel restrictions, and in the UK face masks are being reintroduced on public transport and in shops, most traders are clearly of the opinion that these restrictions may not last for long.

Markets are volatile at the best of times, but at a time when we are tentatively emerging from the pandemic that is now nearly two years old, volatility will reign supreme whenever any threat to a return to normality emerges.

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