FTSE near flat on Monday as traders pause for breath ahead of GDP data

<p>The FTSE 100 traded near flat territory on Monday as investors paused for breath and awaited the final reading of UK GDP for the second […]</p>

The FTSE 100 traded near flat territory on Monday as investors paused for breath and awaited the final reading of UK GDP for the second quarter tomorrow. No change is expected in the reading although given the unpredictability of recent economic data, traders are not taking too many chances in case the data disappoints to the downside.

We have seen some minimal buying strength in the miners and energy firms weighed down by selling in the banks but in truth it has been a fairly lacklustre trading day with little drivers.

Yet again the FTSE has struggled to break through resistance levels between 5610-5635 and whilst the momentum may be waning, there is every chance that if we get some solid economic data through later this week, particularly tomorrows US consumer confidence or UK GDP, Indices could push on further. The longer we remain in consolidation mode however the higher the potential for profit taking and for the markets to fall off their highs.

In a session that has had a vacuum of significant news stories, much investor actions have been dictated by broker recommendations. Sage shares lead the FTSE 100 winners list after Barclays started its coverage of the European software/IT services with a positive view.

Bank of America/Merrill Lynch cut its rating on Smiths Group to neutral, from buy, causing shares to fall by 1.7%. In the same update on the sector, the bank highlighted Weir Group as one of its top picks for the sector, which triggered traders into building upon existing positions, forcing shares higher by 1.9%..

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