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LONDON MARKET CLOSE: FTSE-100 ends day strong on high oil prices

- The FTSE 100 index was lifted by gains for oil majors and miners on Tuesday, as news of easing Covid restrictions in China lifted investor sentiment.

The FTSE 100 index closed up 65.09 points, or 0.9%, at 7,323.41. The FTSE 250 ended up 32.32 points, or 0.2%, at 19,351.27, and the AIM All-Share closed up 4.12 points, or 0.5%, at 907.61.

The Cboe UK 100 ended up 0.8% at 730.72, the Cboe UK 250 closed flat at 16,940.66, and the Cboe Small Companies ended up 0.7% at 13,580.03.

In European equities on Tuesday, the CAC 40 in Paris ended up 0.6%, while the DAX 40 in Frankfurt ended up 0.4%.

Risk sentiment remained supported on Tuesday after China reduced the length of mandatory quarantine for inbound travellers, in the biggest relaxation of entry restrictions after sticking to a rigid zero Covid policy throughout the pandemic.

The new guideline cuts the length of mandatory quarantine for overseas travellers to seven days plus three more of home monitoring – a drastic drop from about 21 days of quarantine and home monitoring combined.

‘Even though the country still has measures in place, the move is interpreted as a sign that things are moving in the right direction, which has lifted sentiment across the board as stocks, oils and industrial metals are higher,’ said David Madden, market analyst at Equiti Capital.

The cities of Beijing and Shanghai also reported no Covid cases on Tuesday, suggesting they had largely contained outbreaks that forced tens of millions to stay home and snarled up global supply chain chains.

In addition, G7 leaders have agreed to work on a price cap for Russian oil, a US official said on Tuesday, as part of efforts to cut the Kremlin's revenues. The official announcement is expected to come in the final communique later as a three-day G7 summit in the Bavarian Alps draws to a close.

There are major questions, however, about unity among consumer countries and whether Russia really would cave in or instead might retaliate by cutting energy supplies to Europe.

Brent oil was quoted at $117.21 a barrel at the London equities close Tuesday, jumping from $114.74 late Monday.

As a result, oil majors Shell and BP rallied 3.1% and 1.4% respectively, while peer Harbour Energy added 3.3%.

Miners were also higher, with Glencore rising 1.7% and Rio Tinto up 2.0%.

At the bottom of the FTSE 100 was Severn Trent, falling 3.9% after JPMorgan cut the water and water waste firm to 'underweight' from 'neutral'.

Peer Pennon in the FTSE 250 shed 5.9% after its South West Water business became the latest to be targeted in the UK Water Services Regulation Authority's investigation into the environmental performance of water companies.

Pennon acknowledged on Tuesday that South West Water is now part of an ongoing investigation into how water and wastewater companies manage their wastewater treatment works. The Exeter-based utility said it will work ‘openly and constructively’ with Ofwat.

Five earlier enforcement cases were opened in March against other UK-based water companies, South West Water joins to become the sixth company investigated thus far.

Petrofac rallied 2.7% after saying its performance and expectations for the six months ending June 30 remain in line with guidance provided at the end of May.

Looking ahead, Petrofac said it is well positioned with a ‘healthy’ pipeline scheduled for award in the next 18 months. It expects to meet its guidance of an earnings before interest and tax margin of 5% to 6%.

On AIM, shares in Naked Wines rebounded 8.5% after some steep losses last week. Chair Darryl Rawlings bought 74,500 shares at $1.93 each, worth $143,785, on the US over-the-counter market on Monday.

While the mood in Europe was risk-on, Wall Street was looking more downbeat. Stocks in New York were lower at the London equities close, with the DJIA down 0.3%, the S&P 500 index down 0.7%, and the Nasdaq Composite down 1.4%.

Americans' feelings about the economy slumped further in June after falling sharply the month before amid concerns over skyrocketing inflation, according to a survey released Tuesday.

Amid the fastest increase in US consumer prices in more than four decades, made worse by the war in Ukraine, the consumer confidence index fell to 98.7 from 103.2, its lowest level since February 2021, according to The Conference Board's monthly survey.

Lynn Franco, the institution's senior director of economic indicators, said inflation is weighing heavily on Americans' perception of the economy.

The dollar was higher despite the worrying consumer confidence data. The pound was quoted at $1.2191 at the London equities close Tuesday, falling from $1.2303 at the close on Monday.

The euro stood at $1.0531 at the European equities close Tuesday, down against $1.0608 at the same time on Monday.

Against the yen, the dollar was trading at JP¥136.22, up compared to JP¥135.19 late Monday.

Gold was quoted at $1,820.14 an ounce at the London equities close Tuesday, down against $1,822.51 at the close on Monday.

Wednesday's economic calendar has eurozone consumer confidence at 1000 BST, German inflation at 1300 BST and US GDP at 1330 BST. In addition, market focus will lie on remarks from US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey and European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde in Sintra, Portugal.

The UK corporate calendar on Wednesday has first quarter results from B&M European Value Retail and full-year results from Moonpig and Mulberry.

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