Monday 21 October 2019 9:20 am

Traders braced for busy week as pound opens flat and European markets edge up

Traders are bracing themselves for a fresh week of market mayhem amid trade war negotiations and Brexit uncertainty.

Optimism over an end to the US-China tariff battle has pushed European markets up slightly after the opening bell this morning, with both the German Dax and the FTSE 100 rising 0.4 per cent.

Read more: Speaker Bercow could obstruct Johnson’s bid for Brexit deal

Chinese Vice President Liu He said “substantial progress in many aspects” had been made during negotiations between Beijing and Washington DC.

Shares in UK banks and housebuilders – two stocks typically sensitive to Brexit developments – led the gains on the London market ahead of the government’s efforts to win sufficient parliamentary support for its deal with the EU.

The pound has remained roughly flat, hovering below the $1.30 mark in spite of Saturday’s parliamentary defeat for the government.

“The pound’s price action and resilience in the face of the defeat for the PM on Saturday shows the market remains constructive on a deal being agreed, whether it’s now or sometime in the coming weeks,” said Neil Wilson, chief market analyst for

He added: “No deal risks appear to have diminished but there is, without approval of the deal and approval of all the required steps to make it reality, still a strong chance of no-deal come 31 October.”

On Friday US markets closed down, with Boeing and Johnson & Johnson leading the Dow south by one per cent.

Read more: Barclays UK chairman Sir Ian Cheshire: Get on with Brexit

Wall Street is set for a busy week of earnings reports that will likely shape investors’ views of how much the current US-China trade war has dented consumer confidence.