It's taken more than 15 years, but the FTSE 100 rose to a record high yesterday, finally beating the level that it reached during the dot com bubble.
The blue chip index ended at a new peak of 6,949.63, beating the previous record of 6,930.2 set on 30 December 1999. Earlier, the index also set a new intra-day high of 6,958.89, surpassing the previous figure of 6,950.6, also set on 30 December 1999. The index rose slowly during the day, but there was a surge in the last 90 minutes of trading, after Eurozone finance ministers approved reform proposals submitted by Greece.
Sentiment was also helped by Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen, who told the Senate banking committee that a rate hike is not imminent.
Tom Stevenson, investment director at Fidelity Worldwide Investment, said: “It’s been a long wait but the FTSE 100 has finally closed above its 1999 peak of 6,930.2. This is a watershed moment. Investors have finally exorcised the ghost of the dot com bubble, which has haunted the market for a decade and a half.”
Last night London Business School professors said there was a 50/50 chance FTSE 100 would hit the 10,000 mark by 2022.
However, they’ve been wrong before. In 2002, when the index stood at 3,858. they predicted a 50/50 chance that the FTSE 100 would break through 6,930 by 2013.
Not everyone was ecstatic. Laith Khalaf, of Hargreaves Lansdown, cautioned: “The agreement reached in Europe is a sticking plaster… The UK election will also cause some thrills and spills.”