FTSE charges 1.6% higher as commodity stocks surge

<p>The FTSE 100 enjoyed its best upside day since the first trading day of the New Year as investors hunted risky asset classes such as […]</p>

The FTSE 100 enjoyed its best upside day since the first trading day of the New Year as investors hunted risky asset classes such as commodity related equities, whilst strong corporate earnings from tech firm ARM Holdings also pushed tech stocks higher.

The market seems to have digested the situation in Egypt for now though, with crude oil prices receding from yesterday’s highs. Whilst the instability of the region remains ongoing, it could continue to disturb equity waters going forward however.

After the poor stock market performance over the last few days which saw the FTSE hit a new seven-week low we have seen an immediate bounce and hunger from investors to use the subsequent weakness as buying opportunities.

It’s been one of those good news days today with good signs emerging from both a macroeconomic and corporate front, helping to supplement stock demand.

We have had both UK and Eurozone manufacturing activity come in much better than the market had expected whilst US ISM Manufacturing also accelerated somewhat unexpectedly and this points to positive economic outlooks.

Aligned with the positive economic data has been a few tech stocks outperforming market expectations such as Autonomy, ARM Holdings and Infineon. Autonomy shares have leapt almost 7% to the top of the FTSE 100 index after the software maker reported better than expected sales. ARM Holdings, the chip maker, reported above consensus fourth quarter results whilst German peer Infineon also delighted the market by raising its full year target. Technology firms have had a very good earnings season and continue to be one area easily attracting buyer interest. The technology sector has been the best performing sector in the UK today, rallying 3.5% as a result.

The mining sector has also been one area that has turbocharged index gains today, helped no end by copper prices hitting new record highs yet again and Chinese PMI data nudging higher last month.

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