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Investment Market Update - 20 January 2022

Updated: Feb 9, 2022

Good morning and welcome to another day of market updates.

Markets in the UK are easing back today and the Ft100 is back to 7570 levels.

The Dow continued its poor week and is back to 35000 levels.

It is all down to concerns about rising interest rates in the US and around the world to try and curb rising inflation.

Prices have gone up at their fastest rate in nearly 30 years - but there is worse to come, experts have warned. Soaring food costs and the energy bill crisis drove inflation to 5.4% in the 12 months to December, up from 5.1% the month before, in another blow to struggling families. The last time inflation was higher was in March 1992, when it was 7.1%. And with gas and electricity costs set to rise further in the spring, analysts predict it will reach that level again. Households have seen their energy bills kept in check by the government's price cap, which limits the amount suppliers can charge, but this is due to be revised on 1 April. As a result, fuel bills could increase by another 50% in the next few months, the energy industry has said. What is inflation? Inflation is the rate at which prices are rising. If the price of a bottle of milk is £1 and it rises by 5p, then milk inflation is 5%. You may not notice price rises from month to month. But right now, prices are rising so quickly that the money people earn does not go as far.

House prices rose fastest in the South West of England last year, official figures show, as a council leader declared a housing crisis in Devon. UK prices jumped by 10% in the year to November, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said, despite people facing cost of living pressures. Demand was particularly high outside of London. South West England saw prices rise by 12.9%. In December, a housing taskforce was agreed in Devon amid residents' unease. The average UK house price in November was £271,000. That's £25,000 higher than a year earlier, the ONS said. In Scotland, the average house price hit a record level of £183,000 in November, where property values increased by 11.4% over the year. In England, average house prices increased by 9.8% over the year to hit £288,000. In Wales, they climbed by 12.1% to £200,000 and in Northern Ireland they were up 10.7% to £159,000. The slowest regional growth was a 5.1% annual increase in London. Detached homes were becoming comparatively more expensive than other types of property, according to data from the Land Registry. In England, the average price of a detached homes was up 13.8% in a year, and in Wales it recorded an average 15.3% increase. In comparison, prices of flats had grown more slowly - up 5.1% in England and 6.9% in Wales. Consumer goods giant Unilever has said it "will not increase" its £50bn offer for GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK) healthcare arm after the bid was rejected. The PG Tips and Dove soap maker said it had considered evidence from GSK, but said it had not changed its view on the value of the business. GSK's health products business owns brands such as Sensodyne toothpaste, Panadol and Centrum vitamins. Unilever had previously said a deal would be a "strong strategic fit". The Marmite manufacturer says it wants a bigger slice of the health and hygiene sectors. But in a statement on Wednesday, the company said it would "not increase our offer above £50bn". The US and UK have begun formal negotiations over Trump-era tariffs on UK steel and aluminium exports. Trade officials in both countries said they were committed to an "expeditious outcome" that would help preserve metals manufacturers in both markets. The trade dispute has been a longstanding thorn in relations between the two allies. The US reached a deal to remove border taxes on European metals shipments last year. Under the Trump administration, the US imposed a 25% duty on foreign steel and 15% tax on foreign aluminium, setting off a firestorm of criticism - especially from allies, including the UK, who imposed tariffs on some US goods, such as whiskey, in retaliation. The US has since lifted some of the measures, which were supported by many steel-makers in the US. Under President Joe Biden, it has reached a deal with Europe and has started negotiations on the issue with Japan. But British exporters continue to face the border taxes. and despite many media channels ignoring them, the Save Derby County campaign continues!!!! Have a great day! Best Regards S Dhanda

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