We kick off the week with some words of caution ffrom Ryanair, which has told investors not to get ahead of themselves when it comes to the travel sector’s recovery.
The airline suffered a sharp slowdown in trading in December and January as a result of the omicron variant and warned that while bookings were improving, it wasn’t out of the woods yet.
Much like rivals easyJet and Wizz Air, Ryanair is plotting aggressive expansion as travel returns, with 720 new routes and 15 new bases announced for the financial year beginning in April.
However, it warned passengers were still booking at the last minute and price cuts were needed to help stimulate demand.
5 things to start your day
1) Sunak pours taxpayer cash into online betting firm The Chancellor has sunk millions of pounds of taxpayer money into an online betting company and a luxury Caribbean firm selling holidays on private islands
2) Underinvestment ‘to cause gas shortages’ Delays and underspending on new gas projects could cause a prolonged global shortage, the International Energy Agency has warned
3) Ivy boss considers bid for Corbin & King Richard Caring, owner of the Ivy and Sexy Fish, is reportedly due to meet with Corbin & King’s majority shareholder
4) UK food bills will soar if Russia invades Ukraine, experts warn Conflict and sanctions would severely disrupt wheat and barley supplies, adding more pressure to UK food prices
5) Jacob Rees-Mogg’s fund offloads Russian bank shares The fund part-owned by the Leader of the House of Commons has cashed in its stake in Russian lender Sberbank
What happened overnight
Asian shares swung higher on Monday as Wall Street futures stabilised, though tests loom ahead as UK interest rates are expected to rise this week and surging oil prices add to worries over inflation.
Data out on Sunday showed China’s factory activity slowed in January as a resurgence of Covid-19 cases and tough lockdowns hit production and demand.
The standoff over Ukraine remains a thorn in the market’s side, with concerns a Russian invasion would also cut vital gas supplies to western Europe.
Lunar New Year holidays made for thin conditions and MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan nudged up 0.6pc in slow trade.
Japan’s Nikkei bounced 1.3pc from a 14-month trough, though local data on industrial output and retail sales undershot forecasts.
S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures recouped early losses to rise 0.3pc, while EUROSTOXX 50 futures rallied 1.2pc and FTSE futures 0.6pc.
Coming up today
- Corporate results: SThree (Full-year results); Ryanair (Interim); Evraz (Trading update)
- Economic data: Nationwide house price index (UK); GDP (EU); consumer prices index (Ger); manufacturing PMI (China)